Saturday, January 09, 2010
As hard as I try, I can't understand the purpose of closing down all these schools. The kids with the problems will still have the problems. The only difference is that the problems will occur in a different setting.
One of my colleagues insists that the purpose of all of this is to slowly get rid of all public schools in NYC, to turn education over to the private sector. She swears Bloomberg is evil through and through and that this is the sole motivation behind the closings. I didn't want to believe this. I wanted to believe that there is an ounce of goodness somewhere in the man and he honestly believed he could improve education this way. But, in spite of what I wanted and still want, actions speak louder than words and I fear my colleague is correct. When schools like Andrew Jackson were closed down, the troubled kids had to go somewhere and many went to schools like Jamaica and caused the same problems there. Now Jamaica is on the brink of being closed. Those kids will have to go somewhere and schools like Francis Lewis, Cardozo, John Bowne, and Van Buren will be taking them in. These schools will now be faced with the same issues Jamaica faced and their graduation rates will deteriorate. It will only be a matter of time until they are closed as well.
Meanwhile, a new Jamaica will be reopened, a school that will consist of a very select group of mini schools, schools set up to succeed. The mayor will laud their success and graduation rates and wonder why the bigger schools cannot do the same thing.
Parents see this, teachers see this, even the slowest students see this, yet nothing is being done to prevent it. The media is bought and paid for with Bloomberg dollars, the same dollars that bought him his third term in office. We need to do something about these closings. We need to stop the domino effect.