When Bill de Blasio replaced Micheal Bloomberg as Mayor of New York City most educators were hoping that a new spirit of cooperation between the DOE and schools would replace the antagonism that was foisted by the Mayor and his Chancellor, Joel Klein. Instead, the new Mayor selected a Klein insider, Carmen Farina, as the Chancellor. Sure, she was a long term educator but she also had a history. First, being principal at P.S. 6 where she oversaw the turnover of 80% of her teaching staff and played games with student selection and funding. Then as a Brooklyn District Superintendent who oversaw the Cobble Hill Regents cheating scandal and claimed knew nothing about it to investigators. Finally, as the Deputy Chancellor under Joel Klein, she imposed questionable learning programs from Columbia Teachers college on the public schools. Yet our union leadership seemed pleased with the selection and told the members that there was a new tone at Tweed.
While the Chancellor did get rid of the useless and money sucking Children First Networks and any new applicants to the Leadership Academy must have at least 5 years of school experience, she retained 80% of the Bloomberg policymakers at DOE Central and froze school budgets. Moreover, class sizes actually rose during her first three years and the ATR crisis remained unresolved. Worst of all, the school based Fair Student Funding system remained that forced principals to hire the "cheapest and not the best teachers" for their schools.
Now that Bill de Blasio is up for reelection, he wants the UFT's endorsement and no longer has to worry about the news media since they blast him daily anyway. Therefore, look for significant changes, starting with a new Chancellor, the end of the wasteful ATR pool that cost $100 million dollars yearly, and changes in school funding. This might be wishful thinking on my part but I do look for significant changes at the DOE if Mayor Bill de Blasio wins a second term.
Regardless, its time to purge the Bloomberg ideology that hurts schools and student academic achievement.