Rudy Crew is the former University of Washington and Tacoma education administrator who now heads Miami-Dade County schools (and recently interviewed for the top schools post in Washington, D.C and possibly Atlanta). A onetime Massachusetts and California school leader, he left Tacoma for NY City in 1995; NY fired him five years later and he took a UW position seemingly created just for him - despite warnings from Tacoma. "Right down to the end he was insisting publicly and privately that he wasn't interested" in NY, former Tacoma school board member Pat McCarthy told SW's Roger Downey, "and then one weekend he was gone, without even leaving a phone number where we could contact him." Indeed, Crew abruptly left the U-Dub after just 15 months.
To his much-traveled resume, the opportunistic and horn-tooting Crew has now added some new deceptions, according to SW sister paper Miami New Times. His just-released book Only Connect: The Way to Save Our Schools (which he is promoting on a book tour while also holding down the $325,000 Miami schools job), contains "258 pages of platitudes and blather that becomes particularly offensive when you get to the parts about the nation's fourth-largest school district, which he runs." Crew calls Miami schools "the model" for Florida even though 26 of the city's schools earned F's (for failed, or fucked) last year and less than 50 percent of students who started high school earned diplomas. Crew boasts of his program's impact on straightening out Miami school kids, but MNT notes that his own two sons were arrested for beating up a man in 2004, and one of them works for a technology firm to which Crew wants to give a $290,500 no-bid school contract. Says Miami school board member Marta Perez: "Many of these programs [mentioned in the book] were already being done by the district before he was hired. He just renamed, repackaged, and remarketed them."