Give de Blasio a chance at fixing schools
Apr 01, 2015 | 12357 views | 0 0 comments | 526 526 recommendations | email to a friend | print
It’s tough to fault Mayor Bill de Blasio’s attempt at fixing failing schools, because he’s at the very least vocal and standing directly in front of the mess that’s public education.

The state needs to give him full autonomy to at least make an aggressive attempt however, because straddling educational purgatory and being bogged down by petty politics is bad for the children.

Throughout his first term, de Blasio has been a master at changing the rhetoric surrounding dense political issues and it’s on perfect display here, as he puts a positive spin on something ugly: failure.

By calling failing schools “Renewal Schools,” he changes the conversation. These are no longer school failing or trending downward, but schools going through a massive rebirth. These schools are the Phoenix rising from the ashes. They’re past the immolating stage and onto the renewal.

So why not stand at a school that self-admittedly had massive problems with gangs in Automotive High School and tout progress? After all, education reform along with city affordability are two gargantuan platforms of the de Blasio administration and they really go hand-in-hand.

For any real progress, the New York State Legislature needs to renew mayoral control to give de Blasio a real shot at putting a dent into the failure. The Renewal Schools program is a good shot, a first injection in the fight against rabies, but without the rest of the treatment, the disease could still be fatal.

Giving de Blasio mayoral control is the best thing for the city. He’s a mayor with a clear plan: improve the city’s public education. And it’s a plan that comes from teachers, not money.

Every modern complaint about New York City can be traced back to a theoretical oligarchy, even education in an era of private and charter schools. Keeping private money out of public schools is a priority for the de Blasio administration and should continue to be a priority.

So let’s give the mayor a shot at fixing public schools. Because if not him then who else? Someone that stands to make a profit, anyway they can, when the bottom line is more important than learning? No, thanks.

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