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A Teacher’s Guide For Those With Short Memories

City Hall Press Release

MAYOR BLOOMBERG APPOINTS CATHIE BLACK – HISTORY-MAKING BUSINESS LEADER WITH PROVEN EXPERTISE MAKING GREAT ORGANIZATIONS EVEN BETTER – CHANCELLOR OF NEW YORK CITY PUBLIC SCHOOLS

Black’s 15 Years Leading Hearst Magazines, 8 Years Building USA Today and 4 As the First Woman Publisher of a Major Weekly – New York – Key Preparation for One of the Toughest Management Jobs at Any Level of Government

Cathie Black was an inspired choice by Mayor Bloomberg to replace Chancellor Joel Klein
New York Daily News editorial, November 10, 2010

And, shame, they will cry, because Black has never been an educator or educrat, let alone spent a career moldering under the weight of cannot-do, excuse-every-failure edujargon.

By our lights, it’s just fine that Black, a successful media executive, will bring private-sector perspective and high management skill to the task for bettering the minds of 1.1 million students.

She comes from a culture that demands innovation and performance. And wouldn’t that be a good thing to have in the city’s 1,400 schools…

Results will tell. Black, head of Hearst Magazines, is an accomplished woman with a proven ability to reshape large organizations. And – this was a key premise motivating Bloomberg’s choice – as a business leader, she sees the challenging new economic landscape for which young people must be prepared.

Empire Strikes Black
New York Post editorial, November 24, 2010

He says he’ll deep-six the nomination unless Mayor Bloomberg agrees to appoint an independent deputy chancellor for academics — a person who has the education “credentials” Black lacks.

That’s absurd on the face of it.

The Department of Education is already top-heavy with folks possessing paperwork bound to make the education establishment giddy with joy.

If this were about qualifications, of course.

But it’s not.

Rather, it is about the teachers’ union and other special interests attempting to take back from Bloomberg what they see as their school system.

And, again, to hell with the kids.

Which is why it’s no coincidence that the United Federation of Teachers has been leading the charge against Black.

But mayoral control — which the Legislature in Albany approved after a pitched battle — means mayoral control.

And not David Steiner control — with all due respect to the commissioner.

Yes, a new poll shows New Yorkers believe the schools chancellor should be a career educator.

But, as Mayor Bloomberg rightly noted yesterday, this is not a popularity contest.

Eroding mayoral control
New York Post editorial, November 29, 2010

State Education Commissioner David Steiner is “an educator, don’t you know, and educators know best.

So he deemed Black — an experienced executive and successful manager of a sort purpose-built to meet the approaching challenges — to be educationally unqualified for the chancellorship.

This is ironic, and potentially tragic.

Ironic, because a long line of fully qualified educators created the crisis that mayoral control was meant to resolve.

And potentially tragic, in that mayoral control has produced real progress, and now Steiner has shown that he’ll happily compromise that control for altogether specious reasons.

Specifically, he mandated the appointment of another educator — they sure stick together, don’t they? — as a principal Black deputy before granting the waivers necessary for her to become chancellor in the first place.”

Cathie Black is the Leader NYC Schools Need
Kathryn Wylde

The appointment of Cathleen Black as Schools Chancellor demonstrates that Mayor Bloomberg has listened to what parents and educators believe is needed in a leader of the city schools.

A to-do list for N.Y.C. Schools Chancellor Cathie Black
Eva Moskowitz

Cathie Black, reportedly a no-nonsense manager and bold leader in her four decades of work in the private sector, has the potential to spark the type of improvements our schools need today.

Business Leaders Announce Support for Cathie Black as Schools Chancellor
Kenneth Chenault of American Express, Jeff Kindler of Pfizer, Terry Lundgren of Macy’s and 88 other corporate camp-followers of Michael Bloomberg

It is imperative that the progress continue, and New York City schools keep moving forward. We strongly believe that Cathie Black has the skills, experience, and leadership ability to achieve that goal, and we urge you to grant the waiver allowing her to serve as Chancellor of the New York City public school system.

Joel Klein Departs; Cathie Black Stepping In
Peter Murphy, New York Charter School Association

I submit that education background is not the primary skill-set to lead a large organization, especially the New York City Department of Education. CEO-type leadership and management skills are paramount, which include finding the right underlings with various expertise, and overseeing an organization around goals and results. With her experience, Ms. Black has proven herself as this type of leader.

Mysteriously Missing Webpage
State Senator Marty Golden, Brooklyn (R-C)

Anyone that studied Cathie Black’s resume saw a talented individual who should be embraced for wanting to accept the challenge and responsibility of educating New York City’s 1.1 million school children. I look forward to seeing test scores rise, new schools opened and more students achieving their highest potential under Chancellor Black.


Did I really say that about Cathie Black?

Michael Bloomberg

“I did have a public search, and I picked the best person.” [New York Times]

Cathie Black is “a bold thinker who was not afraid to champion new ideas.” [Daily News]

“Ms. Black’s broad range of experience and success in business, as well as her demonstrated intelligence, integrity, versatility, leadership and management skills . . . amply qualify her to be chancellor of the New York City schools.” [New York Post]

Joel Klein

“The issues they face, in terms of budgetary issues, teacher-employer relations, evaluations, are things she brings real expertise to. She has a lot of real management expertise, budget expertise, personnel expertise, and those are the big issues now. … I am thrilled that the mayor has selected Cathie Black, a distinguished leader.” [Daily Beast]

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan

“I think she’s going to do a great job.” [New York Post]

Lloyd C. Blankfein,Chairman & CEO, Goldman Sachs & Co,; Kenneth Chenault, Chairman & CEO, American Express Company; and other corporate leaders

“You would be hard-pressed to find a more qualified and more capable candidate than Cathie Black.” [New York Times]

Mayors Koch, Dinkins and Giuliani

“It is clear that Ms. Black certainly has an extraordinary track record of managing large organizations through trying circumstances. We believe that Mayor Bloomberg’s faith in Ms. Black’s competence and her proven history as an outstanding executive is, in and of itself, reason enough to grant the necessary waiver.” [NYC DOE]

Harlem Children’s Zone leader Geoffrey Canada

“I think it’s a tremendous appointment.” [Daily News]

Former DC Superintendent Michelle Rhee

“Her experience has no doubt prepared her well for the challenges that lie ahead.” [New York Observer]

New York Daily News editorial

“Cathie Black was an inspired choice by Mayor Bloomberg to replace Chancellor Joel Klein” [Daily News]

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