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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Mayoral control as crony capitalism

See today's NY Sun about how the DOE has been shooting itself in the foot as regards the continuation of Mayoral control, by treating Legislators as badly as they treat everyone else and denying them input and information. Said Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer, a Queens Democrat:

"What kind of politics is he trying to take out of the schools?" she said. "Is it when maybe a politician calls and says, 'Gee, I'd love this kid in this class.' Is that what he's talking about? Or is it when I call and say, 'Gee, what are you doing with the extra billions of dollars that I gave you?'"

The only people outside of Tweed and the Mayor’s office who have any voice in this authoritarian system – the real stakeholders, as Gary Babad has written -- are the Gates and Broad foundations, private contractors, and the scions of billionaires who attend cocktail parties with Bloomberg and Klein, are encouraged to start charter schools and set them up in existing school buildings to save a few pennies, and as a result deprive other students of the opportunities given to their own .

In fact, the way Mayoral control has operated is unaccountable crony capitalism at its worst. Here's hoping it comes back to haunt them.

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