Thursday, April 7, 2011

Commentary on out with the old and in with the new chancellor- Hey Cathie, I didn't get my good-bye hug

UPDATED 5:30PM- Posting commentary and links as they come in.
Mike Bloomberg in his just-completed press conference stated that he only discussed resignation with Cathie Black this morning, implying that in the last few hours he had a conversation with Ms. Black, did a "search" for a replacement, decided on Dennis Walcott, approached him about the job, and received his acceptance.

Another snap decision about who will be overseeing the education of 1.1 million children?

Despite repeated questioning from reporters, the mayor is refusing to say much about Ms. Black -- hardly surprising. He wants everyone to "look forward," not backward. Message: "Please, everyone, please forget that I made this decision to hire Cathie Black.

A reporter on NY1 just stated that Dennis Black has spent virtually his entire life in public education. I guess that's already being sold as the conventional wisdom, when I believe it is rather far from true. A masters in education, two years as a kindergarten teacher, some time spent on the old Board of Education, never an education administrator -- hardly an entire life devoted to education.

I can't say I was enamored of Wolcott's first decision: to drag a group of Brooklyn grade school kids into City Hall and away from their classrooms to serve as nothing more than background props for a press conference. Sorry, Dennis -- kids are more than props to pretty up your image.

Steve Koss

It is nice to read your thoughtful posts, again, Steve- we've missed your insights!

The mayor and his Deputy's unabashed use a group of kids as cover, to distract away from the adults' mistakes, is so emblematic of the 'Children First'  phonies.

 It is ALL about the adults- just look at the one's jumping ship, either to get further up the privatization pipeline ( can't you just hear the loud sucking sound?)or to propagate the politics and policies imposed on NYC in other cities across the nation.

Let's hope that the media continue to carry the real stories, connecting the dots and digging for facts, and never go back to reporting by press release as they did for the first 9 years of this disastrous dictatorship.


State Ed Commiss Steiner is going too - rats deserting: David Steiner Out as State Education Commissioner -

Check out this link for the Cathie Black video in dist 14 on Feb 28:

South African Mona Davids:
Hmm, interesting...
Shael Polakow-Suransky is officially ACTING CHANCELLOR. It's history, the first (South) African acting chancellor.

I guess 17% rating finished Black off. All I can say is that some poor magazine will end up getting stuck with her. Can she give back the 3 million and get back on the IBM Board so she can sell ARIS versions 2 through 10 back to the DOE?

Bloomberg finally pulled the race card in desperation.

Time to start a "Deny Walcott Waiver" movement? Yes he taught kindergarten and has a masters in education, but he has been a major architect of the dismantling of public ed. See Michael's comment below - but I feel it could have been worse - a sell-out educator with real creds and a P.H.d.

Watch the UFT try to claim credit for this, along with the earth spinning on its axis. It was those whistles they blew at the Feb. 3 PEP.

Sam Anderson comments:
With Dennis, the privatization plot thickens.

Connecting dots...
(a)  Al Sharpton becomes publicly closer to Obama as Obama launches re-election. Both Obama and Arne Duncan come to NYC to speak before Al's National Action Network.

(b)  Al's been chummy with Bloomberg and Walcott for years. Hence, Al's in the key position to "sell" Walcott to the negro loyal opposition forces in the electoral, business and religious sectors as a true promoter of Black Education. Meanwhile, Walcott is a proven "good negro" to white folks by his Urban League "street creds" and his 9-year proximity to Billionaire Bloomberg.

(c)  Walcott can become Bloomberg's and his class allies' blackface to their national privatizing of public education policies.

(d)   With a potential $2billion re-election war chest, Prez Obama will need a few "acceptable" Blackfolk to -once again- convince US educators to gather their collective strength and campaign and vote for this version of EVIL. Sir Walcott will make a great surrogate for Obama and the Dems.

(e)  The last dot is that if the republicans have the upper hand on the national scale, Dennis is their man also. He would have about 18 months to work with them on their national education policies.

In Struggle,

Sam Anderson
Michael Fiorillo:
Hello All,
This is not a good development. Every day that Black was Chancellor, she further undermined Bloomberg and revealed his contempt for students, parents and teachers. Walcott will follow the same smash-and-grab agenda, but will be far more adept at it, and his being black will provide a partial shield from criticism.
After all, if people are motivated by power and greed, better for the rest of us if they are incompetent and the butt of jokes. Black was a gift from the Gods of Absurdity, which they have sadly taken back from us.
Let's all hope that this comes too late to revive people's view of Bloomberg, but it makes our job harder, not easier.
Michael Fiorillo

 Lisa Donlan on Nadelstern blames press for CB's failure! (These no excuses guys sure have a lot of excuses)
Clearly the failure was not about the lousy results of the neo-liberal union-bashing, autocratic, privatizing educational experiments, re-orgs , complete 360's and other kick-the-anthill management tricks passed off by this administration for the last 10 years as reforms.
 No,  w/o the necessary pandering by the press and the inflated edubudgets spent on the vendors, bells and whistles,  the very system is destabilized since it can stand no scrutiny and obviously hangs by a thread of PR gloss and spin. Good riddance to all the rats fleeing this sinking ship. Too bad we and our kids are going to be stuck w/ the remaining wreck for years to come.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Mona Davids                                                    917-340-8987
Lupe Todd (for Assemblyman Jeffries)          917-202-0116
Chris Owens                                                     718-514-4874 

Deny Waiver Coalition Statement
on the resignation of
Unqualified Chancellor Cathie Black

"Mayor Bloomberg's political treatment of
education is leading to disaster for our children." 

Today's resignation of Schools Chancellor Cathleen P. Black closes another sad chapter in the history of Mayor Michael Bloomberg's manipulation of public education in the City of New York.  Ms. Black's departure is a clear victory for parents and all those who care about the quality of public education.
After disregarding the concerns of many, Mayor Bloomberg pushed ahead with the nomination and defense of a candidate unqualified to lead the largest public school system in the United States of America.  Cathie Black's departure confirms for parents, teachers and administrators their fear that the Bloomberg administration's education track record is strong on rhetoric, hype and titles, yet weak on substance. 

The Mayor has provided a textbook lesson in the dangers of unfettered Mayoral control of our education system.  In sum, Mayor Bloomberg's political treatment of education is leading to disaster for our children. 

The Deny Waiver Coalition is proud to have continuously highlighted the fact that the Mayor "had no clothes" when it came to this appointment.  The Deny Waiver Coalition has never wavered in its demand that an appropriate individual serve as Chancellor -- an individual whose experience in education substantially exceeds the minimum criteria for the position. 

There remains cause for concern.  The Deny Waiver Coalition called for a national search to find the best Chancellor candidate.  That has not happened.  The Coalition demanded a Chancellor with proven experience at leading public schools or school systems.  New York City still does not have that.  The Coalition advocated for transparency in the Chancellor selection process.  That has yet to happen.

Accordingly, the Deny Waiver Coalition members support the immediate adoption of legislation amending the New York State education law to strengthen the minimum requirements for service as Chancellor of New York City's public schools, and to minimize the discretion allowed with regard to waivers on the part of the Mayor and the State Education Commissioner.

The Deny Waiver Coalition includes individual petitioners who challenged the appointment of Cathie Black in court.  Parent Petitioners from the five boroughs are New York State Assemblymember Hakeem Jeffries (Brooklyn), Democratic State Committeeman and District Leader Chris Owens (Brooklyn), Ms. Mona Davids (Bronx), Mr. Noah E. Gotbaum (Manhattan), Ms. Khem Irby (Brooklyn), Ms. Lydia Bellahcene (Brooklyn), Ms. Patricia Connelly (Brooklyn), Ms. Monica Ayuso (Queens), Ms. Mariama Sanoh (Brooklyn), Mr. John Battis (Brooklyn), Ms. Latrina Miley (Manhattan), Ms. Shino Tanikawa-Oglesby (Manhattan) and Ms. Maria Farano-Rodriguez (Staten Island).  The teacher Petitioner is Ms. Julie Cavanagh (Brooklyn).

A blast from the past, thanks to Jeff Kaufman. Check out Walcott's subcontractor pals.
November 3, 1999, Wednesday



The Board of Education is set to award a massive $9 million contract today to the New York Urban League in a deal aimed at getting parents to join "school leadership teams" to help run the city's 1,100 schools.

The unprecedented contract - $3 million a year for three years - is earmarked for a citywide campaign and media blitz to drum up interest in the teams and to train parents who sign up.

"This will cover five boroughs and reach parents of different racial, ethnic and religious backgrounds," said league president Dennis Walcott.

The money will pay for staff, educational forums, training sessions, an Internet site, public relations and advertising such as bus posters.

School leadership teams spring from the 1996 Governance Law, which gives Chancellor Rudy Crew broad powers over school boards and superintendents, and were supposed to be in place by Oct. 1.

Each team is to have 10 members - half parents and half school administrators and teachers. They will have input in educational plans, budgets and issues such as school uniforms and safety.

The Urban League has subcontracted with three groups for its Parent Leadership Program: the United Federation of Teachers; Aspira of New York, a Latino community organization; and the United Parent Associations.

Ernest Clayton, UPA president, said the $9 million to be spent by the board isn't enough.

"When it comes to teacher and principal development, they spend money like crazy," he said. "It's about time they try to make an attempt to treat parents well."






LOAD-DATE: November 3, 1999


  1. Sam is absolutely correct!

    Obama and Walcott: Shills for Privatization. Who needs heroin pumped into the inner city when you have Obama and Walcott.

  2. Obama and Walcott: Shills for Privatization. Who needs heroin pumped into the inner city when you have Obama and Walcott.

  3. I've said it before and I'll say it again- WHY don't we start a movement to RECALL his Imperial Highness?

    Clearly, Herr Bloomberg has proven his disdain for the citizens of NYC.

    Regardless of his much touted business experience" and money, clearly he is NOT in any way a public servant, who is supposed to be answering to the PUBLIC he supposedly serves.


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