Saturday, May 30, 2015
Chancellor Carmen Farina Is A Huge Disappointment.
As we approach the end of another school year, let's look at what real changes Chancellor Carmen Farina has implemented in her second year as head of the New York City public schools. First, let's look at the few positives.
Elimination of the useless money-sucking "Children First Networks". This was a no-brainer since this was the Frankenstein creation of Eric Nadelstern who replaced Carmen Farina in the Joel Klein Administration as she was forced to resign as Deputy Chancellor.
Changing the experience criteria of the applicants to the infamous "Leadership Academy" from three years in education to seven and at least five years as a classroom teacher.
Anti-Charter and leveling the playing field for all schools by no longer exempting the small high schools created under Bloomberg/Klein from accepting "high needs students" and artificially raise up their statistics.
Unfortunately, for the parents, students, and teachers of the New York City public schools Chancllor Carmen Farina has far too many negatives. Here are the major ones.
Failure to reduce class sizes as promised by Mayor Bill de Blasio during his campaign. New York City public schools have the largest class sizes in the State and have actually increased under Chancellor Carmen Farina.
Froze already tight school budgets despite an economic revival that gave DOE a record amount of money to the agency.
Continuation of the destructive "fair student funding" formula that shortchanges schools, created the ATR crisis, and forced principals to hire the "cheapest and not the best teachers" for their schools.
Kept many of the Bloomberg/Klein appointees in policy making positions that translated in the continuation of the policies that make the classroom a hostile environment.
Ill-advised elimination of the cell phone ban and a loosening of the student discipline code that has resulted in a more disruptive classroom.
Failure to remove incompetent and vindictive principals and allowed the "double standard" to continue. Worse, she has failed to remove many of the 400 "Leadership Academy" principals that she stated should not be principals of their schools.
Finally, her solution to the ATR crisis was no solution at all. In fact, it made the ATR a second class citizen with reduce "due process" rights and may actually increase the ATR pool over time. In fact, she is no friend of teachers at all.
The Chancellor is a huge disappointment and I don't see much improvement until she retires for good and leaves the New York City schools to a competent Chancellor.