Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Avella Refuses to Waiver

As we commented this morning, the NY Post's urgent push to grant the new ed chancellor-designate a waiver is an egregious rush to judgment-and now State Senator-elect Avella chimes in with a letter to Commissioner Steiner calling for a rejection of the Black appointment: "Senator-elect Tony Avella, has transferred his vociferous opposition to outgoing NYC Schools Chancellor Joel Klein to Klein’s replacement, Cathie Black, and is calling on the state Education Department to decline to offer her the waiver she requires due to her lack of experience in the field."

In our view, state ed shouldn't do a damn thing until there are joint senate/assembly hearings on the merits of the Black designation. As Avella says in his letter: "While I am sure Ms. Black is a very well qualified executive in the magazine industry, the top executive in the New York City school system should be an educator,” Avella, a former NYC Councilman and 2009 mayoral candidate, wrote in a letter to Education Commissioner David Steiner. “I firmly believe the chancellor should be a person who understands how to develop curriculum, who understands the value of parental involvement, and who understands what principals, teachers and students go through on a daily basis.”

The legislature should also include in its hearings a full evaluation of the Klein regime-with an eye towards deconstructing all of the cash nexus-based cheerleading for the outgoing chancellor and his serial check writing boss. And Daily Politics, which has an interesting review of the public reaction to the appointment-should in the future refrain from quoting the likes of Joe Williams without a disclaimer-Williams is a longtime Bloomberg supporter who has also been the recipient of the mayor's largess.

But three cheers for Avella, someone who-unlike the gallery of electeds that DP quotes-isn't afraid to speak truth to power. As for Cathie Black, let's make her the head of the NY State Association of Boarding Schools-or, perhaps the Connecticut auxilliary of that association.