After only a few short months on the job, Cathie Black is out as School Chancellor. She is to be replaced by Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott, a graduate of Francis Lewis High School, in Queens.
Cathie Black was undoubtedly a misguided choice for Chancellor. But her abrupt resignation, while an important opportunity, is hardly a cause for celebration. Every second the public school system’s leadership crisis deepens, millions of our children suffer the consequences.
There is still an unfathomable amount of hard work ahead of us if we are to improve the quality of education in this city and make every school a center of nurturing and enlightenment. And neither the mayor nor the chancellor will be able to do this on their own. This is an opportunity to push the reset button and make the work of educating the city’s children the product of a functional, mutually respectful relationship between all stakeholders – students, parents, teachers, administrators and the Department of Education.
Hopefully, we can jump on this opportunity and work with Deputy Mayor Walcott and improve schools in Central Brooklyn, but the larger system of Mayoral control — relying so heavily, as it does, on the mayors choice of personnel — is still something that we need to improve.