Monday, November 10, 2008

Klein for Ed Secty? Yes, We Had an Impact

NY Times Reporter Elissa Gutman writes about it Klein’s Name Is Floated, and Bloggers Object in the NY Times City Room.

I've had some recent disagreements with Mike Klonsky but this is one hell of a post on the reasons Klein is the worst choice.

I'm glad Gootman found our buddy Woodlass' comment on the Obama web site:
On a blog attached to the Obama campaign’s official Web site, a poster with the handle Woodlass from New York, N.Y., pleaded with President-elect Obama to pass over Mr. Klein, writing:

He hasn’t made schools in this city any better than they had been, because it’s obvious students aren’t doing so well and neither are the teachers. He excluded parents and the rank-and-file from the decision-making process, poured millions into machines to crunch data for no practical purpose, and he neither respects or defends truth.
One of the important points in this outpouring of antagonism to Joel Klein is that so much of it comes from parents. When Klein spokesperson David Cantor said the complaints are from entrenched interests, one parent wrote:

Dear Mr. Cantor,

I am one of the signatories in a recent letter asking President-elect Obama to appoint an education secretary with real experience in education. I am a public school parent in New York City. I'd be interested in knowing what you consider my "entrenched interest in policies that have never worked." My entrenched interest in my child getting a good education?

Yours sincerely,
Ann Kjellberg

Believe me, we're just scratching the surface. Notice there is not one teacher or parent defending Klein. (Time for Bloomberg to get out his checkbook.) Since we focus on teachers, how does the business community view a leader who alienates the entire body expected to implement his policies? In the real corporate world, it is curtains. Maybe that is what happened to Klein in his last job before being pushed out at Bertelsman and into the Chancellor of the (gulp) NYC school system.

Here's the petition if you want to sign. It says educators but parents (as Leonie Haimson says, kids' first teachers) should sign too.

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