Tuesday, July 3, 2007

The Plot Sickens

July 3, 2007 (GBN News): While a decision has reportedly been tabled until fall, the controversy over the selection of a Principal at an East Harlem high school may not be over, and suspicions abound over what has been going on behind the scenes. As reported in the Daily News, one of the two finalists for the Principal position at the Manhattan Center for Mathematics and Science was Jolanta Rohloff, the former Principal of Lafayette High School in Brooklyn and a DOE Leadership Academy graduate. The News reported that the C-30 selection committee at the Manhattan school had not been told details of her stormy tenure at Lafayette, details which included frequent battles with teachers and students, questionable grading practices, and “withholding textbooks from students for weeks to minimize the loss of funds from unreturned books”. Many committee members and other parents had complained that they were kept in the dark about Ms. Rohloff, but after the News story was published, the C-30 committee learned from the Superintendent that the search will be resumed in September after one of the two finalists “accepted another position” and the other “did not clear the reference check”.

The superintendent did not reveal which of the candidates was which, but GBN News has learned that the other finalist for the position had been Emomali Rakhmon, currently chief of school security for the DOE and formerly the President of Tajikistan. Mr. Rakhmon, according to GBN News sources, had been encouraged by Schools Chancellor Joel Klein to apply for the Principal position when he heard that Mr. Rakhmon, like Ms. Rohloff, was a “leadership academy” graduate. However, the resume Mr. Rakhmon submitted to the C-30 committee failed to even mention his stormy tenure as Tajik strongman, where he ruled with an iron fist, banned cell phones and automobiles from universities and decreed that citizens drop the Slavic “ov” from the end of their names. The sanitized resume mentioned only his “high administrative positions” in both Tajikistan and New York, and emphasized his “leadership qualities” and his ability to bring order and discipline to schools in both places.

When reached for comment, Mr. Rakhmon confirmed that he had indeed been the other finalist for the position. He stressed that the Leadership Academy he attended in Tajikistan was, as he put it, “better than Klein’s”. “I know it’s better,” he told GBN News, “because I ran it myself.” He went on to say, “I was top graduate. I got all ‘fours’. Not easy to do in Tajikistan, harder than your ELA.” However, GBN news has learned that Mr. Rakhmon was not just the “top graduate”, he was the only one, and rumors in Tajikistan were that the other academy students had all dropped out after they “did not clear reference checks” or “accepted other positions”.

While Mr. Rakhmon denied any responsibility for the sudden change in the selection process, he is known to be close to Mr. Klein, and committee members voiced suspicion that Mr. Rakhmon could still be in the running for the position. A committee member, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that, “If we really had to choose between them, I suppose the guy is better than Rohloff, but next time we’ll learn a lesson from this, and we’ll be sure to read the NY City Parent Blog at http://nycpublicschoolparents.blogspot.com/ to get the real story before we accept the choice they give us.


Anonymous said...


I would have gotten away with it if it wasn't for those meddling parents. But you think it's so funny they caught me? Wait until we all go to Washington with President Bloomberg. You and your wiseguy friends will not be laughing for long.


Gary Babad said...

Hmm ... That DOE PR job I've been trying to sell out for is starting to look like small change. I'm now settling for nothing less than Press Secretary in the Bloomberg Administration. Hear that, Emo? We'll be colleagues!

Anonymous said...

Rohloff was probably top dog due to her attempted water-hosing of disruptive students at Lafayette HS back in Dec 05. Yep, that surely endeared her to the higher ups at the DOE. Bet Ya she is not DOA as she will no doubt rear her head again before Klein&CO leave town.

Anonymous said...

When the C-30 committee reconvenes, Borat, purportedly, will be the front runner. He has bribed all of the committee members with sheep (for food or for "sexy times".)

Leonie Haimson said...

Borat for Chancellor!