Here's the opening:
He ran for office as the Education Mayor, but his report card is mixed — at best.
Mayor Bloomberg’s overhaul of the public schools was one of the most ambitious projects in the history of city government — backed by a doubling of the education budget during his tenure.
From the very question of who would control the country’s largest school system to the tiny details of what kids ate for lunch, Bloomberg evaluated and acted on every aspect of public schools.
But 12 years after the mayor began his quest to reinvent the mammoth agency, graduation rates are up, but other indicators of student achievement remain flat — and some have even worsened.
“They threw everything they had at the problem, but the levels of learning are about the same as they were before,” said Brooklyn College education Prof. David Bloomfield. “It’s amazing how small the improvements are.”
Test scores down, NAEP scores flattened, class sizes up, conflict between communities increased dramatically because of his school closure policies, but Bloomberg says his reform agenda remains the "poster child" for the rest of the nation:
Despite his critics, Bloomberg remained certain of his own prowess as an education reformer. “What is clear is that for the 12 years we’ve been doing this, the results are – by any national standards – outstanding,” Bloomberg said at a recent press conference to announce a slight increase in graduation rates. “We really have become the poster child.”
I've said this before, I'll say it again.
Ever notice when Bloomberg touts his "legacy" here in NYC, it's always in the "We're The Bestest Thing Ever!" vein?
This week when confronted with the very large increase in income inequality under his reign and questions about the increase in homelessness in the city, Bloomberg defended his "legacy" by saying that there's no better place in the world to be homeless than NYC.
Bloomberg then had his hired henchmen, like Howard Wolfson, take to the Twitter and the pages of the WSJ to tout his greatness in helping alleviate poverty and homelessness - even though the stats show a big increase in both during the Bloomberg Years.
His need to be the "Bestest Thing Ever!" is really an interesting insight into his troubled psyche.
Even when his legacy is so clearly not the "Bestest Thing Ever!" - even when the Bloomberg-friendly Daily News acknowledges this - Bloomberg still touts it as the "Bestest Thing Ever!"
In the years ahead, Bloomberg will continue to have his minions write up the propaganda and "history" of his years in office to try and rewrite the story so that it becomes "Bloomberg Years: Bestest Thing Ever!"
Bloomberg is the poster child for a fevered ego who has never quite made it out of the pre-adolescent stage.