Friday, January 05, 2018
The New Chanceelor Will Need To Eliminate The Administrative Bloat At The DOE.
One of the major problems that the New York City Schools suffer from is that far too much money is diverted to the Central Bureaucracy at the DOE at the expense of the schools and the students. According to Leonie Hamson the Executive Director of Class Size Matters the number of top level administrators has doubled since the last year under the Bloomberg administration. Moreover, the budget at the DOE's Central Bureaucracy has increased 70% since Mayor Bill de Blasio took charge of the schools, Finally, there has been a 34% increase in the central staff expenses.
By contrast, the schools contimue to be underfunded. The latest information from the IBO is that the average school only receives 87% of what "fair student funding" requires. The planned increases to 90% has so far failed to materialized as money continues to be diverted by the DOE to other uses. Furthermore, class sizes remain the highest in the State with far too many students, about 33%, in classes too large for proper instruction. Finally, more than a half a million students, almost 50%, attend overcrowded schools and the DOE is falling behind in allocating funds to build new classrooms to accommodate the overcrowded schools. With the expected influx of students from Puerto Rico,. the overcrowded can only get worse not better without additional funded to build more classrooms.
Yet, the DOE rather spend money on the academically struggling Renewal Schools by allocating 50 million dollars annually to the program that pays for consultants and administrative bureaucrats, many of them failed principals or other failed administrators that found a refuge in the Renewal program. In addition, the DOE continues to protect incompetent and/or vindictive principals and resists efforts by parents, students, and teachers to remove them. The latest examples were at Central Parlk East 1 and Townsend Harris High School, where it took the media to help removes those principals. Finally, the new Chancellor will need to address the ATR situation and the policies like school based fair student funding that penalizes the placement of veteran teachers.
To resolve the above issues the new Chancellor must eliminate the administrative bloat at Tweed that is the root of all the problems listed above. Once the administrative bloat is eliminated, then money can be freed up for lower class sizes, the solving of the ATR crisis, and the schools receiving adequate resource to operate for the benefit of their students.