As the state Education Department moves to oversee the East Ramapo school district, Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan on Tuesday urged caution in taking away local control of the district.
“When we move in any way shape or form to usurp local control, we have to be extraordinarily judicious,” Flanagan said. “I’m not suggesting for a moment there aren’t extraordinarily acute issues on that district, because there are.”He added: “It’s important to recognize that in the state of New York where we’ve directly intervened in school districts, our track record isn’t very good.”
That's an interesting admission since the state is set to take over 144 schools in the next year or two if they don't "improve."
Flanagan's sending a message to Dennis Walcott and his East Ramapo monitoring team to not upset the Hasidic men who sit on the school board for the school district that serves a largely black and Latino population of students.
And I get the politics of that - the Hasidic community knows how to use political donations to make sure that politicians take care of them.
Witness the Kiryas Joel/Cuomo relationship.
Nonetheless, Fanagan has unwittingly also admitted that state ought to be careful in how it administers the school receivership program pushed by the governor and approved by the state Senate and Assembly in the last budget.
There it is, in plain language from John Flanagan, former head of the education committee in the state Senate, current state Senate Majority Leader (at least until he's indicted like the last five):
“It’s important to recognize that in the state of New York where we’ve directly intervened in school districts, our track record isn’t very good.”