Archive for February 13th, 2004

13th February

First Published in The New York Sun, February 13, 2004

By Andrew Wolf

 When public policy starts going sour, smart officials and bureaucrats look to change direction. That was the case with the two great turnarounds in city services of the last generation, public safety and welfare. To those on the outside, it appeared that the education “reform” ushered in when Mayor Bloomberg won control of the New York City public school system would radically change the direction of the system. It is now clear that the exact same problems that beset the old Board of Education continue to plague the schools today. This comes as no surprise to the most perceptive observers of the school system. 

    I don’t like to characterize educational policy as either left wing or right wing, preferring instead to focus on what works and what doesn’t. For some reason, however, folks in the center and the right seem to favor a rigorous traditional approach, and most on the left prefer the softer,“progressive” agenda. It is in that direction that the school system had been drifting in for many, many years, a direction that brought the schools to the point at which Mr. Bloomberg declared them an abject failure.  (more…)