Tuesday, September 18, 2007

A parent in the Broad award focus group speaks out

As widely anticipated, the Broad Foundation gave its prize to NYC today -- despite the letter we sent yesterday, asking them to withhold this honor as it was not legitimately earned.

Unmentioned in the announcement of the prize, of course, are the millions of dollars that the Broad Foundation has given NYC and the innumerable ties -- both financial and ideological-- between the foundation and the DOE.

As mentioned in this AP article, the Foundation says that "it
conducts focus groups with teachers and parents" before awarding this prize.

Below is a statement from David Quintana, parent leader in Queens and a member of the group of parents that met with the researchers from the Foundation a few months back. It is remarkable that even with a hand-picked group of parents, DOE could apparently find no one who would say anything good about their administration of our schools.

As one of the four (4) parent participants in a focus group held at Tweed for researchers from the Broad Foundation, I am disappointed in the fact that NYC received the Broad Foundation prize today.

This group of parents, handpicked by Martine Guerrier of the Department of Education (DOE), expressed uniform disappointment with the various changes put into place by DOE, the lack of transparency and accountability, and the lack of consideration given the views of parents about what their children really need to succeed.

Clearly the Broad Foundation did not take parents views into consideration when awarding this prize to NYC today.

I feel that the DOE is totally dismissive of parents views and makes short shrift of our concerns for our children (i.e. - class size reduction, cell phone ban, school bus fiasco, numerous reorganizations of the DOE, et al.)


David M. Quintana

District 27 Presidents Council - Recording Secretary; District 27 Representative to Chancellors Parents Advisory Council, Queens Community Board 10 - Education Committee and Queens Borough President's Parents Advisory Council member

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