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New Schools Chancellor appointed in New York City

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There is a new chancellor of the New York City School system, Carmen Farina. According to to today's issue of The Staten Island Advance: "It remains to be seen if Mayor Bill de Blasio’s choice of Carmen Farina as chancellor of the New Ycrk City school system portends improvement over the policies of the Bloomberg era. But it certainly promises to be a departure."

Durng Bloomberg's tenure, "Mr. Bloomberg’s reinstatement of mayoral control of the school system, which had been relinquished in 1969 by Mayor John Lindsay, brought an end to the political turmoil that had become a hallmark of public education in New York City, and no small source of its dysfunction," added The Advance. "The tenure of chancellors was measured in months, not years," added the report.

"When it came to managing the education of more than a million students, Mr. Bloomberg turned to his business acumen and techniques that helped him amass a personal fortune in the double-digit billions of dollars. He collected and analyzed data," added The Advance.

"As the adage goes, if you can’t measure it you can’t manage it. So the new buzzword was “metrics.” There had to be uniform way of measuring everything," according to the article..

That led to a growing reliance on high-stakes standardized testing, though some of it was required by state and federal laws.

The Bloomberg method also brought intense scrutiny — to the point of micromanagement — of teachers, who were threatened with public humiliation if they did not meet arbitrary performance goals.

It resulted in A-through-F grades for schools, and resulted in no few schools from being closed and converted to charter schools.

When all was said and done, the results were decidedly mixed, and none of the gains could lay claim to being spectacular.

"Mr. de Blasio has vowed to de-emphasize standardized testing, and said he would stop, at least for the time being, the practice of closing struggling schools and replacing them with rent-free charter school," according to the report.

Ms. Farina,added The Advance, has a 40-year career in education..

“We know that there are things that need to happen,” she said to The see abot Advance, “but they need to happen with people, not to people .”

So Staten Island educators, let's wait and see what this newest chancellor has to say about educational reform. Weigh your opinion Staten Island parents and eucators and tell www.examiner.com what your opinion is of the newly appointed chancellor.

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