Thursday, July 26, 2007

Let’s get to work

Mayor Mike is like a crazy uncle; he does some crazy things, my parents don't always like him, but he's family. I haven't always agreed with his policies, but I must admit he has created an atmosphere where things could change in the Department of Education. I feel empowered as a school teacher in NYC. He's eliminated much of the layers bureaucracy. It is my impression that he genuinely wants to make change happen. We might not always agree on the way to bring about that change (paying for grades, a bombardment of standardized tests) but I admire his unwavering commitment.

The following appeared in the NY Times this Wednesday morning:

"Mr. Bloomberg attempted an answer of sorts in a half-hour speech that
urged national leaders to follow the methods he used to improve New York City’s
public schools, like increasing teacher salaries, issuing grades for schools and
instituting a corporate-style system of accountability.

“The federal government should commit to a significant increase in new
federal funding, including for higher teacher salaries, but cities and states
could only receive it if they began implementing the reforms I’ve outlined
today,” the mayor said as more than 200 regional Urban League leaders dined on
roast pork, salad and iced tea.

The mayor pitched the plan as a crucial step in alleviating racial
inequality. “We can stop talking about closing the achievement gap between races
and actually have them catch up,” the mayor said. “We can stop talking about the
equal opportunity of the civil rights movement and actually make it a

The speech was, by many accounts, a hit. Mr. Bloomberg closed with a
charge — “Let’s get to work” — and stepped offstage to a standing ovation as
well-wishers lined up by his chair. "

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