Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Friday, August 14, 2015

NYSED Commissioner Elia's Appointment Of Dennis Walcott As East Ramapo State Monitor Is An Empty Gesture

The rhetoric out of former NYCDOE Chancellor Dennis Walcott yesterday after he was named state monitor of the troubled East Ramapo school district:

“I will be present on a regular basis and meet with community members,” Walcott told the crowd, which alternately cheered and booed the plan.


Walcott and his team will provide a report of their actions and findings to Elia and the Board of Regents in December.

He said he'll make unannounced visits to schools and offices in East Ramapo to get a better idea of what's going on. He also plans to reach out to parents of children who attend private schools.

"We know when something stinks, when something's not right," Walcott pledged, to cheers.

Walcott has no power, so even if he actually sees something that "stinks," there isn't going to be much he can do about it:

Skeptics argued his team had no real power, since it can’t reverse board decisions, attend closed executive sessions or fire board members.

A state fiscal monitor’s report last year recommended an independent monitor with veto power, and said the board often violated open public-meetings laws by spending most of its time behind closed doors.

Essentially what you have with the Walcott appointment is a high profile dog and pony show that will solve little in the district.

It's an empty gesture, one that got some applause yesterday - and some boos - but in the end will probably get mostly boos as people realize Walcott and his monitoring team can't actually influence much in the district, even if they wanted to because they have no veto power.

And I must admit, I''m a skeptic that they want to in the first place.


  1. Demnis Walcott has a troubled past as an ineffective Uncle Tom administrator. He threw children of color under the bus in order to fulfill the commands of his white billionaire owner. As such, Elia has brought in a kindred spirit, someone of her own ilk. Elia is an administrator with a troubled past as she woefully mismanaged the finances on her previous gig.

  2. He was the Mayor's poodle, now he will be the Commissioner's lap dog. Incompetent, ineffective, and a hypocrite.