Posts Tagged ‘School Governance’

5th September
2008

Published in The New York Sun. September 5, 2008

By Andrew Wolf

A commission, appointed by Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum, has recommended a revision in the State Education law, putting restrictions on the power of the mayor to run the city’s public schools. Lurking in the background is the 800-pound gorilla in the room, the issue of term limits.

The two issues are intertwined, and indeed the mayor’s inflexibility, rejecting any proposal for change in school governance, suggests that he will indeed move to end or modify term limits, to allow him to run for a third term.

(more…)

23rd May
2008

First Published in The New York Sun, May 23, 2008

By Andrew Wolf

“We’re lawmakers, not education experts,” City Council Speaker Quinn declared in a breakfast speech Tuesday. She proceeded to wring her hands over cuts of $191 million to the schools. If she really wants to be mayor, better she should be asking how the administration squandered the $8 billion added to the budget these past six years, even as the system serves 60,000 fewer students, and why the results are so lackluster.

When the Board of Estimate was struck down by the courts in the 1980s, the resulting charter allowed for increased powers for the City Council to provide a counter-balance to the vast influence enjoyed by the mayor. The charter has made the Council Speaker the second most influential person in the city government and term limits make her an automatic candidate for mayor.

(more…)

9th November
2007

First Published in The New York Sun, November 9, 2007

By Andrew Wolf

The creation of school report cards with letter grades attached is an intriguing concept, which explains the enthusiasm by the editorial boards here in Gotham. At its center is a simple idea I advanced in this space more than five years ago, value added testing.

On October 4, 2002, I wrote, “The best schools are not necessarily those that score highest, but rather those that achieve the greatest improvement of their individual students. Only if we look at the schools by this measure can we evaluate the efficacy of the curriculum and teaching methods they employ.”

(more…)

21st September
2007

First Published in The New York Sun, September 21, 2007

By Andrew Wolf

It hasn’t escaped the notice of the city’s politicians that in less than two years, unless mayoral control of the public schools is affirmatively ratified by the state legislature, the old Board of Education will rise like a phoenix from the ashes, along with the much-maligned 32 community school boards.

Two commissions have been appointed this week to study the future governance of the schools, one by the City Council, the other by the public advocate, Betsy Gotbaum.

(more…)