Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Juan Gonzalez: Ending Failed Education Policy Means Cleaning House At Tweed

In Juan Gonzalez's column on the Pearson field test protests arising around the state this week is this:

Students and teachers at 1,100 city schools — plus an additional 3,000 statewide — are confronting more state-mandated tests this week.

For the third straight year, the state and its testing company, Pearson, are conducting stand-alone field testing for several hundred thousand pupils — tests that don’t count but are used to identify possible items for next year’s state tests.


“We’re so overtested it’s beyond belief,” William Calla, the superintendent of the Fairport Central School District in suburban Rochester, said. That’s why he is among some 20 school superintendents who have rebelled this time.

“There’s absolutely nothing in the commissioner’s regulations or federal education law that requires us to give these tests,” Calla said. “I just shipped the test package back unopened.”

Their revolt is one more sign of the spreading furor nationwide against politicians’ obsession with test-taking.

City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña has joined the furor — at least in words. She has already declared standardized tests will no longer be used as a sole measure of performance in city schools.
“We understand the frustration among parents and educators with the frequency of testing,” Fariña’s spokeswoman, Devora Kaye, said. “This (field testing) is one of many practices we plan to review this summer and evaluate for the coming year.”

Unlike Superintendent Calla, however, Fariña allowed the state field tests to go ahead.

In doing so, she appears to be heeding those top-level holdovers from the Bloomberg era who, inexplicably, still surround her at Tweed.

(You don’t get rid of a failed policy, Chancellor, by keeping the very people who championed it.)

I understand that Farina took over mid-year and so it was difficult to do a total overhaul of both Tweed and the Bloomberg policies this academic year.

But here's an important question:

Will de Blasio and Farina end the failed Bloomberg education policies by cleaning house at Tweed over the summer or will the Bloomberg holdovers still be here in September?

Because if they are, then as Juan Gonzalez points out, the failed Bloomberg policies will still be here too and that means despite the words we have heard from both de Blasio and Farina about a new era of collaboration between educators and parents, a new era when students are more than their test scores, nothing of substance will have really changed from the Bloomberg Years to the De Blasio Years.


  1. Who are the "Bloomberg holdovers" as mentioned in the article, at Tweed? What are the names and what do they do?

  2. I'd like to know these names too. Let's help push these bastards out. I know scumbag Suransky and shithead Sternberg are gone. Who is the article referring to???????

  3. In regards to Farina and deBlasio moving away from Bloomberg's horrible educational policies...

    Actions speak louder than "tone".

  4. Kathleen Grimm , the grim reaper of closing schools is always around Farina - curdles blood.

  5. A rally is in formation for this Tues at Tweed focused on cleaning house. Look for details on the blogs.