April 21, 2010

Interview with RI's Education Commissioner

Justin Katz

Rhode Island Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education Deborah Gist has reworked her office space. The unguided visitor would surely pass her desk by, thinking it that of a secretary — although a secretary to whom it would not be clear, because she has knocked down the wall to the large corner office and transformed it into an inviting conference area. That was the room to which she led me for our interview, yesterday afternoon.

Our conversation touched on obvious topics such as union participation in the Race to the Top application, regionalization, and vouchers, but I also asked about her office's appropriate involvement in communities and the relevance of school department-taxpayer relationships to the state.

I'll have further commentary as my schedule loosens, but here is the unedited video. (Click "continue reading" for segments one and two.)