Sunday, November 21, 2010

Ed Notes Exclusive: Break In at UFT Headquarters

Anyone with information leading to the recovery of Michael Mulgrew's spine, please notify the UFT ASAP
Insider sources at the UFT have informed Ed Notes that an unknown party broke into UFT headquarters. So far the only item that has been known to be taken is UFT President Michael Mulgrew's spine.

While there has been some suspicion that something was amiss from the day Mulgrew took office, the clincher came with this item in the NY Times:
...Michael Mulgrew, president of the United Federation of Teachers, the city teachers’ union, said, “All of these people have heavy-duty backgrounds and success in education, so obviously David Steiner is clearly looking at this from the educational side, as he should be.” 
- NY Times, Nov. 19, 2010 - Panel on Pick for Schools Has Close Ties to Bloomberg
The reporters from the Times, having analyzed the panel and interviewed numerous people who raised issues with the members of the Steiner panel to review Cathie Black's waiver, were so incredulous at Mulgrew's comment, one of the lone voices in the article supporting the panel, they immediately called 911 suspecting something was amiss.

An all-points bulletin has been issued in an attempt to recover Mulgrew's spine. This may turn out to be a wild goose chase as some doubt there ever was a breakin in the first place.

Inside UFT sources claim that former UFT president took Mulgrew's spine and other parts of Mulgrew's anatomy when she left to go to the AFT, along with and her stapler.

Excerpts from the NY Times article:
New York State’s top education official on Friday named an advisory panel of eight experts, at least half of them with strong connections to the Bloomberg administration, to help him decide whether to approve Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s controversial choice to run the city’s school system.

Three panelists selected by David M. Steiner, the state education commissioner, worked as senior officials at the city’s Department of Education.

One of those three now works at a foundation that was, for many years, the vehicle for Mr. Bloomberg’s personal charitable donations.

A fourth panelist is the head of a museum that has received almost half a million dollars from Mr. Bloomberg in donations since he took office. 

Three panelists are in charge of sizable urban school districts: AndrĂ©s A. Alonso, the chief executive of the Baltimore school system and a former deputy chancellor under Mr. Klein; Jean-Claude Brizard, the superintendent in Rochester and a New York City native who has been a teacher and principal and was a top aide to Mr. Klein; 

The other panelists are: Ronald F. Ferguson, a Harvard economist who focuses on the achievement gap between minority students and white students; Kenneth G. Slentz, a top aide to Mr. Steiner at the State Education Department; Louise Mirrer, president and chief executive of the New-York Historical Society, which has received regular donations from Mr. Bloomberg, and a former top official at the City University of New York; and Michele Cahill, a vice president at the Carnegie Corporation of New York and a former senior educational policy adviser to Mr. Klein. 

 Assemblyman Hakeem Jeffries, a Brooklyn Democrat who has long been critical of Mr. Bloomberg’s education policies, questioned the panel’s makeup, saying, “It appears that the deck has been stacked in favor of granting the waiver in a manner that will further undermine public confidence in the appointment of Ms. Black.” 
So kiddies, let's review the panel: Brizzard, Alonso and Cahill all worked for Klein, plus Louise Mirrer who heads a museum receiving donations from Bloomberg.  Hmmm. Let's do the math. 4 is half of 8 and that makes - gee, only one more and Unchatty Cathie gets her waiver.

And let's review Mulgrew's comment:
“All of these people have heavy-duty backgrounds and success in education, so obviously David Steiner is clearly looking at this from the educational side, as he should be.” 

The clincher that Mulgrew was missing something was his classification of Michelle Cahill as "having a heavy-duty background and success in education". The Times piece has this to say:
As one of Mr. Klein’s most trusted aides from 2002 to 2006, she played a crucial role in reorganizing the school system and developing new schools, and was the driving force behind new programs for students most at risk of dropping out. But in 2004, she was denied a state waiver to serve as deputy chancellor, because while she had a dozen years of teaching experience and a master’s degree in urban affairs, she lacked traditional education supervisory credentials. 
Cahill was the much maligned agent of Klein's first deputy chancellor, Diane Lam, and was much vilified by many teachers over her rigid micro-management policies of force feeding the workshop model.


Anonymous said...

FANTASTIC! You are such a great writer & I appreciate your insights!

Anonymous said...

Mulgrew's comments are unbelievable. Who does he represent? Himself, the teachers, or Bloomberg? He's been a WIMP since he took office.

Ira said...

It is not a matter of being spineless - it is just carrying on the Weingarten tradition of collusion.


Anonymous said...

An astute observer has pointed out that charter backer R. Boykin Curry also sits on the New-York Historical Society board.

proofoflife said...

Another example of how hard I would laugh if it weren't prohibted! Why are we all forced to steal each others staplers? Must be all those educational boards we are doing! Thanks Norm!

Tom said...

"Unchatty Cathy" is nice tag.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the fictional "Unity Caucus Insider" stole it!

Anonymous said...

I do not know one
teacher who really believes
in or supports the UFT.
God in heaven, save us.

But this is exactly what
"they" want. Divide and conquer.
I would not be surprised
if a nice foreign account
has been set up for these
union leaders. Chump change for
the billionaires looking to reap
hundreds of millions off of public
How do we start a new union with a spine?
Save America! Save real public schools!