So, you're not going to hear a defense of LaGreta Brown from me. There's just so much about her that I find troubling, not the least of which is the fact that she did not maintain her professional credentials when she knew that it was a requisite for her job. The whole thing reeks of entitlement.
But what you're also not going to hear from me are calls for Ackerman's head. I've seen a number of stories (and comments on blogs and forums) screaming about Ackerman's supposed lack of oversight in hiring Ms. Brown by not checking her credentials. I have to say, I think that anger is a bit misguided.
I've hired a number of people in my day. Many of those that I've hired are professionals who require a certain level of credentials in order to maintain their employment. The funny thing is this: in all of the interviews, resumes and references, I have never insisted on viewing credentials. As professionals, I have assumed that if you're applying for a job, you are telling me the truth and you are qualified to do the job. As part of the job, my hires are expected to maintain their credentials; I don't insist that they demonstrate this proof to me. I assume that professionals will act... well, in a professional manner.
And it's not just me. I've been on a number of interviews over my career and I've been hired quite a few times. Not once have I been asked to show my credentials, nor proof of my degrees. I've been asked about them, yes, but never required to prove that they exist. Again, I believe that a certain level of trust exists in the professional world.
So while I may question a number of things about what happened at South Philadelphia High - and while I may be shocked at Ms. Brown's appalling lack of judgment and character - I refuse to draw the line back to Ackerman. I don't think it's fair or accurate. Ms. Brown is responsible for misleading those at the SDP. It is her professional responsibility to remain certified and her professional duty to alert her superiors if there is a problem with her credentials. Her choices to do neither say a lot about her - and her alone.