ARIS Abolished!

Nov 20, 2014 by

Ron Isaac – The ARIS computer system that former schools chancellor Joel Klein jammed down the the Department of Education’s throat proved to be what its critics, including the city comptroller who audited it, suspected: a gigantic boondoggle, fraud and scandal.

This mammoth, supposedly comprehensive, all-purpose data vault of student information was an abysmal flop from the start. It was user-hostile when it operated at all ( 3 percent of parents used it; the percentage of teachers wasn’t much higher), and it was also an instrument for a potential large-scale invasion of privacy.

To pay for it the taxpayers took a $100 million hit.  And we have Joel Klein to thank.

When he left the DOE for the corporate sector he became head of Amplify and that company was instantly favored with a lucrative contract to manage ARIS.

Just a case of backs taking turns being scratched.  And what’s wrong with geese taking turns laying a golden egg? Anyway, Klein is long gone from the DOE and now so is ARIS. The DOE is deep-sixing ARIS and replacing it with a system both more efficient and less susceptible to confidentiality raids.

This story hardly made the papers. Not the stuff of glamor or drama.  But certainly the stuff of true upfront leadership.

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