For the last WonkyFolk of the year Jed and I sat down with Nina Rees, outgoing CEO of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. It’s an interesting conversation about the sector, its politics, what Nina has learned, and what’s next. She also shares her own story at the end.
In my view, Nina did a masterful job navigating a complicated set of cross-pressures for her organization and the charter sector. On any given day she was catching flack for being too hard-edged or for not being collaborative enough. Nina is an institutionalist not a tribalist. She got grief for inviting Randi Weingarten to a national charter school conference but also for inviting Betsy DeVos while she was Secretary of Education. We need more institutional thinking and leadership like that – especially right now.