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New Flavor, Same Nasty Taste: New York City’s New School Chancellor

November 10th, 2010 · 3 Comments

The following blog is by “Jude Soto,” who will occasionally be contributing pieces on educational policy and politics in New York. Jude Soto has been a teacher in a low-income public high school in New York City since 2004. A native New Yorker, Soto has an M.A. in history from Brooklyn College. Outside of the academic world, his pursuits include traveling, weightlifting, and long distance running.

On Tuesday, New York City school teachers traded the devil they know for the devil they don’t.  In a move that made me and my colleagues get up and dance, Joel Klein resigned as New York City’s schools chief to take up a position as an executive vice president of News Corp.  A minute later, in a move that made me and my colleagues sit back down and sulk, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced that another businessperson with no education or classroom experience, Cathie Black, will be the new chancellor.  Once again, dollars, not children, motivated Bloomberg’s decision.

Cathie Black is about as qualified to lead city public schools as Jared, the Subway guy.  In what almost seems to be a requirement under the Bloomberg administration, the millionaire magazine publisher never taught a day in her life.  Personally, though, I happily await Mrs. Black’s tenure.  I look forward to reading rhetoric in the newspaper about how my coworkers and I are lazy, drains on society, from someone who made sure USA Today was published on time.  I am looking forward to contract negotiations and listening to an elitist, whose children by the way attended pricey Connecticut boarding schools, claim that my salary is too high. I am also looking forward to seeing how blind New Yorkers can be to think that it’s anything other than cronyism and union busting that motivated Bloomberg’s decision.

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Tags: Education · Labor Relations

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Chicano future tense // Nov 11, 2010 at 6:48 am

    That’s the way the capitalist system operates..

    It’s corporate ruling class elite places the needs of people last on their list with money being the bottom line-their top priority.

    To the eilte,teachers,students and their families are just so many expense items listed on their accounting spreadsheets to be reduced to the bare minimum so that more money can go to politically connected administrators and education bureaucrats.

    The system is rotten.Only the people united can change oppresive situations such as the one in NY described by Sr Soto in his article.
    The teachers,students,familes…the public, should get together and demand qualified,responsive,responsible,accountable administrators instead of political cronies.

    That’s the only way things can change.

  • 2 Anna // Nov 11, 2010 at 11:21 am

    Capitalism isn’t supposed to be the super rich doing whatever they want (stealing) without any regulations or oversight. Unfortunately, our federal government is too weak to stop it.

    As for the school system, Bloomberg has no intention of fixng it, but if a school system is failing, then it needs a complete overhaul and somebody from the outside should take over. If a teacher can’t even use correct punctuation and syntax then that teacher needs to find a new job.

  • 3 HeavyGabe // Nov 13, 2010 at 8:10 am

    This woman clearly doesnt have the background to be heading up the NYC school system. However, this has nothing to do with Capitalism. How the heck is a state funded public school system going to turn a profit? Only private schools have that opportunity. Also, pumping money backup the ranks to “politically connected administrators and education bureaucrats” isnt even close to Capitalist ideology. In fact, its just the opposite. This is a great example of a corrupt, out of control government where the good ole boy system of bringing in your friends has taken hold. The players most likely earned their money on the free market, but now its the ugly side of government control redistributing the wealth. It appears this redistribution can just as easily go up the socio-economic ladder as it goes down. The big difference here is when it goes up, it benefits a few in a big way. When it goes down, its diluted amongst the masses and maybe somebody might get a new pair of shoes.

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