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Thursday, November 15, 2007

Mayor and Chancellor Diagnosed With Rare Neurological Disorder

November 15, 2007 (GBN News): In an unusual coincidence, both Mayor Michael Bloomberg and schools Chancellor Joel Klein have been diagnosed with the same rare neurological condition. The disease, said to be so uncommon that is has not yet been given a name by the medical community, is characterized by a total disconnect between one side of the body and the other.

Dr. Renee Smythe, a Neurologist at the East Side Medical Center, is a nationally recognized expert on the disease. She told GBN News that this condition can have some serious consequences. “In layman’s terms, the best way to describe it,” the doctor said, “is that one hand literally doesn’t know what the other is doing.”

Dr. Smythe was asked how the disease is diagnosed. She said that the condition does not show up in standard medical tests. “It usually reveals itself through a person’s behavior,” she told us. “Actually, in this case it was pretty obvious. You’ve got the Mayor and Chancellor pushing their school cell phone ban against all reason, then next thing you know they’re giving out the phones as rewards to students. Same thing with the school report cards. You get a school with a terrific quality review, which is then given a D or F grade by the very same department that did the quality review, and neither the Mayor nor the Chancellor sees any problem with this system. If this isn’t a case of one hand not knowing the other’s business, I don’t know what is.”

When asked about the prognosis, Dr. Smyth indicated that a cure is unlikely to be found any time soon, given the rarity of the disease and the paucity of research. The best recourse, she said, is to keep the person out of any decision-making or policy-making situations, because that is where the most damage can occur. “Unfortunately,” she said, “it appears that neither the Mayor nor the Chancellor is being held in the least bit accountable for their actions regarding the school system. So the chance of stopping them from doing these kinds of things before the Mayor’s term expires in 2009 is very low. The only cure at this point seems to be term limits.”


Anonymous said...

I've heard that this malady also goes by a different name. Something about body parts: "Not knowing your a.. from your elbow"

Carol said...

I agree with each of these posts. If would be too much to ask if it's possible for the Mayor and Chancellor both to be informed about how out-of-touch they are with the actual situation in the NYC Public schools. Now that the chancellor is appointed by the mayor, he is not independent. Plus, the mayor and his chancellor are completely surrounded by "yes men".

Several years ago, before the Department of Education replaced the Board of Education, it was possible to at least figure out how the bureacracy was organized. But now, it's impossible to figure out the organizational structure of the Dept of Ed. Now, we seem to have a "Chief Equality Officer" who is proposing to give cell phones to poor students(economically and academically?)and have various celebrities send text message to them with words of encouragement (while they still won't have the phones with them at school???)

What ever happened to centralized functions like curriculum, instruction and assessment-- one would expect to see these in an Education department. But now the department has functions and acronyms that are neither transparent nor understood.

Furthermore, now that the districts have been superceded by some other level of bureacracy, I have no idea of the accountablity within the department (and the school report cards are idiotic, at best!)

It seems that the Board is focused on empowering and then punishing school principals. My child is a 10th grade student. She has 1 textbook this year - Her teachers give her handouts (that are supposed to cover everything else) and of course, she is expected to take notes during class(this is a learned skill that is honed over many years - typically I have found that children copy the words written on the board)and usually need to be given time to do this during the lesson.

So how do these crazy plans like providing cell phones and grading the schools, offering rewards and punishment to the principal and teachers, help advance her education?

I just bought Barrons regents prep books from Barnes and Noble, so I'd not only have an idea of the subject matter being covered in her classes (and the material that WILL be on the "TEST"), but so that I can refresh my memory on the subject matter, so that I can be of help to my daughter if she needs help with stuff I haven't looked at in many decades.

But, since she already has a cell phone and since her school isn't one of the 25, she won't get a prize from the department - but then, that isn't the purpose of education....