Breaking News: Mayor-Elect Chooses an Educator to Lead NYC Schools!

Great news for New York, and perhaps one of the first nails to be hammered into what I hope to see as the coffin holding the tarnished remains of school reform and reformers. We have our own elections for Governor and BESE coming up. I hope we make the right decisions for our children and our people and reverse the horrible education experimentation Jindal has wrought on our state.

Diane Ravitch's blog

For the past dozen years, New York City has had a procession of school chancellors who were not educators: a banker, a prosecutor, a publisher, a former deputy mayor.

Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio made a daring–and wise– decision to select a professional educator to run the nation’s largest school system, which enrolls 1.2 million students. His search narrowed to three excellent candidates, all of whom are career professional educators: Joshua Starr, superintendent of the Montgomery County public schools, known for his strong stand against standardized testing; Kathleen Cashin, a member of the New York Board of Regents, who has valiantly opposed its unwise emphasis on high-stakes testing; and Carmen Farina, a seasoned educator and former deputy chancellor in the city school system.

De Blasio selected Farina, who promises to bring a new era of collaboration with parents, teachers, and principals. She brings humor, passion, and intelligence to the job…

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Teach For America Civil War: A sincere tell-all from New York City

Great youtube video from a former TFA teacher. His story aligns with the stories I’ve been told or wittnessed with a number of other well-intentioned but ill prepared TFA recruits. His closing remarks on what TFA has become (and influence peddler and scab workforce for the wealthy) is sadly accurate for an organization that started out with laudable goals before being lured away with promises of power and wealth. Watch his video and you will see not just his shattered dreams and illusions, but those of the children he had to face every day in his classroom. The reality is that all too many of our children face unprepared novices in their classrooms due to the machinations of TFA, the New Teacher Project, City Year and the other do-gooder amateur teacher franchises that have sprung up to serve the wealthy and corrupt by underserving our kids and driving off our experienced teachers and close our public schools to install their charter profit centers.

Cloaking Inequity

A Cloaking Inequity reader made me aware of this sincere tell-all from a former TFA teacher that was recently posted on Carla Ranger’s blog, a Dallas ISD School Board member (we have lots and lots and lots of TFA in Texas— Dallas, Houston, Rio Grande Valley etc.). John Bilby’s thoughts reblogged from Ranger’s blog:

I left the organization because I felt that it does not adequately prepare its people to serve the poorest children in public schools. I also think that TFA is more interested in power, access, and influence in the federal game of education than it is concerned with resolving educational inequity. Its “corps members” are merely a means to this end, providing the organization with a front while it pursues the goals of its donors, namely to remodel public education in this country in order to favor a high-turnover, non-unionized workforce in charters run by hedge-fund…

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