Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Schools boss Joel Klein talks education reform with News

Expand Messages
  • Leonie Haimson
    Klein in today s Daily news: It s very important obviously that our reforms, which I think are the platform for transforming the system, continue for as far
    Message 1 of 6 , Sep 3, 2007
    • 0 Attachment

      Klein in today’s Daily news: “It's very important obviously that our reforms, which I think are the platform for transforming the system, continue for as far out as the eye can see."

      And as to the huge pool of ATRs – doing nothing except working occasionally as highly paid substitutes: “After a certain period, we should be able to terminate those employees, absolutely. Unfortunately, that's not where we are now, and I think it's wrong."

      Leonie Haimson

      Executive Director

      Class Size Matters

      124 Waverly Pl.

      New York, NY 10011

      212-674-7320

      leonie@...

      www.classsizematters.org

      http://nycpublicschoolparents.blogspot.com/

       

      Schools boss Joel Klein talks education reform with News


      By CARRIE MELAGO
      DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER

      Monday, September 3rd 2007, 4:00 AM

       

      Joel Klein is beginning his sixth year as schools chancellor.


      New teachers and classmates are just the beginning of the changes awaiting the city's 1.1 million public school students as they return to class tomorrow.

      The nation's largest school system is immersed in a period of rapid restructuring as regions are dismantled, new organizations take their place and school funding is overhauled.

      Chancellor Joel Klein, starting his sixth year heading the city's schools, sat down with the Daily News to discuss the changes, as well as the opening of a controversial Arabic school in Brooklyn , the future of mayoral control of schools and his hopes for the year ahead.

      Q: Did you anticipate the controversy that has surrounded the opening of the Arabic-themed Khalil Gibran school?

      A: "I certainly think it has been enormously misconstrued....I regret enormously that people for their own ends, in my view, utterly miscast what was going on. And to say that this was either a religious school - which it flat out is not - or that somehow it's some political indoctrination school is just wrong....I think it will be a successful school."

      Q: What are your priorities for this school year?

      A: "My first priority is, across the board, I want to see strong achievement in the city. The second priority is really to embed the reforms that we have been working on over the last several years so that there is real sustainability of the work we are doing. It's very important obviously that our reforms, which I think are the platform for transforming the system, continue for as far out as the eye can see."

      Q: Mayoral control of schools is up for renewal in two years. What do you think its strengths are?

      A: "I've met with people throughout the country who want to follow it. The reason they do, there are two reasons: One is because you can't imagine, other than public safety, anything that is more important to a city than its education system. And that should be a top priority of every mayor....And second, I think the results are there."

      Q: What did you learn from the resistance to the reorganization and from the outcry following last year's bus rerouting?

      A: "What I do think I could have done better, and should have done better, was to more efficiently engage the various community groups, stakeholders in the system, and that's something that I've been working on....I basically should have done the engagement more efficiently. On the busing, it was a mistake, and I regret it."

      Q: Will the city have to return $61.5 million in state funds restricted for half-day pre-K?

      A: "I hope not because I would like to see that used for full-day pre-K. I think the need is clear in this city, and it seems to me that by restricting it to half-day, what we've found is it just affects the demand for the programs by parents who need full-day care."

      Q: The city has a large pool of "excessed" teachers working as highly paid substitutes. What's the solution?

      A: "After a certain period, we should be able to terminate those employees, absolutely. Unfortunately, that's not where we are now, and I think it's wrong."

      Q: Are you confident that the first day of school will run smoothly?

      A: "By all indications, the teachers we've hired, the students we've placed, the walk through the schools, I'm really very optimistic."

       

      Alphabet Soup

      Another school year begins tomorrow, and with it comes a whole new crop of acronyms for parents to learn. Among them:

      ARIS - Achievement Reporting and Innovation System. An IBM-made $80 million computer system enabling sophisticated analysis of test scores and other student data.

      DFA - District Family Advocate. The person assigned to help parents in each of 32 community school districts.

      ISCs - Integrated Service Centers. Five consolidated administrative school offices - one in each borough - replacing the 10 disbanded regional offices.

      SSOs - School Support Organizations. The entities selected by schools to manage and advise principals.

      FSF - Fair Student Funding. A method of allocating budget dollars to schools based on student enrollment and need.

       

       

       

    • juliwooweb
      I saw this Q and A on ATRs in a blog, then wrote the reporters and posted a shortened version on ice-mail. Perhaps it s worth repeating for the people who are
      Message 2 of 6 , Sep 3, 2007
      • 0 Attachment
        I saw this Q and A on ATRs in a blog, then wrote the reporters and posted a shortened
        version on ice-mail. Perhaps it's worth repeating for the people who are not deeply
        involved in this . . . . yet. It's also worth asking parents to keep these things in mind
        when they listen to what this chancellor says.


        ***
        There are many reasons teachers become ATRs, and Klein is grouping them all into one
        big pot. Teachers become ATRS when:

        -- their schools are closed and the system doesn't absorb them for other reasons, like
        the ones below

        -- their lines are cut (electives, mostly) and the system doesn't absorb them for other
        reasons, like the ones below

        -- they are senior teachers, a lot of them fine teachers, but principals have to pay for
        them out of their own budgets now and are frequently choosing to go for the "2 for the
        price of 1" idea: new people in the system cost less. (These new people, by the way, are
        not always fully certified.....)

        -- they are politcal activists who are standing up for kids' rights (e.g., overcrowding,
        being denied special ed services), teachers' rights (e.g., chapter leaders, other union
        activities which are perfectly legal) and rub their principals the wrong way

        -- they are whistleblowers, who serve the much larger common good (like exposing
        schools that change marks)

        -- they are teachers who might be having trouble teaching in a difficult school but who
        would be fine in an easier environment (should we lose them because they're not a perfect
        match for every kind of educational setting in the system?)

        -- teachers who are not getting a good reference from their employer.

        The vast majority of the above are average to excellent teachers. There is no reason why
        they should be put out of the system, and if you report it just the way Klein says it, you are
        doing a disservice to the city's schoolchildren and to the city's experienced teacher work
        force.

        Klein is converting the school system, and not having been an educator himself, not ever
        coming up through the ranks as an educator, he is applying his business models to make
        a system that has fundamentally different goals than what's good for the public.

        There may be grander socio-political agendas in operation here, like the complete
        privatization of education (break up what you have, then sell it off to private corps.), the
        disempowerment of the lower and middle classes, and the marginalizeion of unions in
        general. He has done nothing yet for the public good. He has only dismantled what was
        (not just the original, but when that didn't work, even his own restructuring) and passed
        this off as "reform". It filters down to the common man -- student, teacher, educational
        community -- as a big fat zero gain.



        --- In nyceducationnews@yahoogroups.com, "Leonie Haimson" <leonie@...> wrote:
        >
        > Klein in today's Daily news: "It's very important obviously that our
        > reforms, which I think are the platform for transforming the system,
        > continue for as far out as the eye can see."
        >
        > And as to the huge pool of ATRs - doing nothing except working occasionally
        > as highly paid substitutes: "After a certain period, we should be able to
        > terminate those employees, absolutely. Unfortunately, that's not where we
        > are now, and I think it's wrong."
        >
      • norscot@aol.com
        ... I would not say zero gain. More like a big fat minus 10. Norm ************************************** Get a sneak peek of the all-new AOL at
        Message 3 of 6 , Sep 3, 2007
        • 0 Attachment

          In a message dated 9/3/07 1:14:38 PM, juliwoo@... writes:


          passed
          this off as "reform". It filters down to the common man -- student, teacher, educational
          community -- as a big fat zero gain.

          I would not say zero gain. More like a big fat  minus 10.
          Norm



          **************************************
          Get a sneak peek of the all-new AOL at http://discover.aol.com/memed/aolcom30tour
        • Elizabeth Green
          I am away on vacation and away from e-mail. I will return Sunday March 16. Talk to you then, Elizabeth
          Message 4 of 6 , Mar 16, 2008
          • 0 Attachment
            Re: [nyceducationnews] Re: Schools boss Joel Klein talks education reform with News I am away on vacation and away from e-mail. I will return Sunday March 16.

            Talk to you then,
            Elizabeth
          • Elizabeth Green
            I am away on vacation and away from e-mail. I will return Sunday March 16. Talk to you then, Elizabeth
            Message 5 of 6 , Mar 16, 2008
            • 0 Attachment
              Re: [nyceducationnews] Re: Schools boss Joel Klein talks education reform with News I am away on vacation and away from e-mail. I will return Sunday March 16.

              Talk to you then,
              Elizabeth
            • Elizabeth Green
              I am away on vacation and away from e-mail. I will return Sunday March 16. Talk to you then, Elizabeth
              Message 6 of 6 , Mar 16, 2008
              • 0 Attachment
                Re: [nyceducationnews] Schools boss Joel Klein talks education reform with News I am away on vacation and away from e-mail. I will return Sunday March 16.

                Talk to you then,
                Elizabeth
              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.