DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - Several school districts across North Texas have new people overseeing them this year. But the most high-profile of them all is the Dallas Independent School District's Superintendent Mike Miles. He has been moving so fast, and garnering so much attention, that it is easy to forget he has only been on the job for three months.
"My mom didn't speak English. My mom didn't drive. My dad was in Korea, two tours," Miles said.
But his background and experience have prepared Miles to be the new leader of Dallas public schools. "At this time in Dallas ISD history, when the education landscape is changing so quickly, that's what you need in a superintendent," Miles explained, "someone who's going to lead, have vision and make the tough decisions no one else wants to make."
Nearly 160,000 students fill more than 200 schools in the DISD.
Miles personally trained school district principals, to guide them through his goals, explain what he expects to see from DISD teachers, and discuss the achievement that he wants to see from Dallas students. "I say it takes five years to make a miracle," Miles said, "and one year to show we can do it."
Innovative teaching. Keeping students connected. Merging student performance with teacher pay. Miles has laid out his plans for the DISD, and he is about to find out if that plan has any traction. "Our job is to really focus on rigor, critical thinking, making sure kids can think and solve problems. We're going to have to do more of that," he said.
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