After eight years in charge of New York City’s public schools, Chancellor Joel Klein might want to stop blaming other people for his failures. It is time for Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Klein to stop their lecturing to the rest of the nation in promoting their vision of how to fix America’s schools.
Klein, a lawyer and not an educator, has had his chance. He and Bloomberg were given absolute, unprecedented powers over the schools by the state Legislature in 2002. Now, as they begin the ninth school year under their regime, the scope of their failure is increasingly being understood.
There has been a discussion of the state’s unprecedented recalculation of their standardized test scores. The state’s admission that test scores were wildly inflated over the past few years has definitively proven that the miracle Klein and Bloomberg are disgracefully still taking credit for is fiction.
In reality, it may be even worse: a deliberate fraud perpetrated on voters.
While the responsibility for the tests lies squarely with the state Department of Education, city educrats were aware that there was a problem. But that did not slow down their determination to use the sainted statistics to build up their boss before the election last year.
Polls noted that 57 percent of voters who made education their top priority last year voted to re-elect the mayor, who won by just five points. Had just 2.5 percent known the truth and switched sides, the outcome of the election might have been different.
We cannot rerun the election, but the least we should expect from Bloomberg and Klein is to have the decency to stop spreading the fiction of a “New York miracle” that simply never happened.
We cannot build the future of America’s children on this despicable deception.
©2010 Community News Group
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