NYC Say No To Permanent Mayoral Control of Schools: Press Conference

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Charles Barron -- Bill to reconstruct governance structure of New York City schools

[Education]

The End Mayoral Control Coalition fully and enthusiastically endorses Assembly Bill A.7924 introduced by Assemblyman Charles Barron to establish a Commission to thoroughly study the ineffectiveness of the NYC mayoral control of education state law. It authorized an entirely undemocratic system of school governance in 2002 when the then Mayor Bloomberg was given dictatorial control of education in NYC. The current mayor has said he wants permanent undemocratic control.

We are holding a Press Conference at 11AM tomorrow, Wednesday 10 June, on the Steps of Tweed- The Dept. of Education Headquarters -located at 52 Chambers Street --East of Broadway.

This Bill A.7924 is an essential first step toward transparently investigating why a thirteen- year policy of mayoral control has failed to improve the quality of a NYC public school education for all students. We expect to learn that mayoral control has produced gross racial and class inequities among our public schools of shockingly gross proportions. We also expect the Commission to recommend the abolition of the current undemocratic mayoral control law and authorize an open exploration of a democratic parent-student-teacher system of school governance.

From our experience, we charge that exclusive mayoral control through a personally hand-picked chancellor must be fully exposed for the incompetency it has continually demonstrated. It has mis-educated millions of our students, especially children of color, ELL, immigrant and special needs students.

David Dobosz, a retired teacher from District 23 in Brownsville and a member of ICOPE notes, “Public schools in heavily ‘charter schooled’ neighborhoods have become seriously under-resourced buildings that concentrate ever-increasing numbers of high needs children in over-crowded classes that simply cannot be serviced effectively by a downsized staff and developmentally inappropriate standardized tests. The mayor owns problems like these because only he, not the parents nor the students, teachers or the community have any real decision-making power to substantially change the numerous adverse in-school circumstances that negatively affect their children. These adverse circumstances have only worsened over the years, and we refuse to allow this any longer.”

Brooklyn Parent Activist and CoChair of the Coalition for Public Education, Muba Yarofulani says, “The sun setting of mayoral control is this month. As a parent of a child attending a NYC Public School, I will fight to see a commission put into place to investigate this 13-year old failed educational system, which has squandered tens of billions of dollars, and instead, transform it into a democratic People’s Board of Education.”

The End Mayoral Control Coalition is supported by many grass roots organizations, chiefly the Coalition for Public Education, The Independent Commission on Public Education, Black New Yorkers for Educational Excellence, S.E.E.D.S., Inc (seedswork.org) and others. Each of these organizations advocates for a democratic governance of public education at the community level in order to provide equal educational opportunity for all students.

www.forpubliced.org www.forpubliced.blogspot.comCall: 347-583-5925 or 917-756-6417

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