Thursday, December 1, 2011
Noah Gotbaum on the Mayor's defamation of our teachers
The Mayor's statement that teachers represent the "bottom 20%" of our society is so outrageous, so disdainful and so demonizing of teachers and the teaching profession as to merit a defamation suit. And the policies which have been generated by these beliefs so destructive and demoralizing to those teachers, to our children, to our schools and to our communities as to merit a recall.
To our friends at the AFT/UFT, NEA/NYSUT are you on the phone with your lawyers, and if not why not?
To our friends in the press: will you be asking the mayor whether he stands by these lies about 80,000 NYC public servants, the overwhelming majority of whom hold Masters degrees, are incredibly hard working and intelligent, and supremely dedicated to our children in the face of class size increases, constant budget cuts, annual reorganizations, increasing child poverty, and a testing/accountability regime that lacks any credibility? Will you also be asking him, as well as public school parents, whether he and we would and should prefer class sizes for our kids of between 50 and 70+ (with "better teachers")?
And while you are at it please also ask Howard Wolfson, Dennis Walcott, Arne Duncan, Merryl Tisch, John King, Christine Quinn, as well as the editorial boards of our local and national press if they agree with the Mayor's statements? If not, will they disassociate themselves?
They are all happy to prattle the call for teacher accountability. Where is the grading system and Progress Report for those whom - despite nine years of complete and total control of all facets of the education system and a 50% budget increase - haven’t generated a single meaningful improvement in student performance, college/career readiness, honest graduation rates, parent satisfaction, or real and lifelong learning?
To allow the Mayor, his staff or indeed any elected or appointed official to get away with statements like this is unconscionable. To allow someone with such disdain for our parents, our teachers, our communities, and our public schools, to continue to supervise and to steward the education of our 1.1 million school children, is criminal.
- noah e gotbaum, Community Education Council D3