More people are asking state Education Commissioner David Steiner to deny a waiver that would allow Cathie Black to officially become the city's new Schools Chancellor, despite her lack of education experience. Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer announced in a statement, "At 5:30 p.m.today, Borough President Scott M. Stringer will stand with Manhattan PEP appointee Patrick Sullivan to announce a resolution demanding that the Panel for Educational Policy be given the opportunity to consider the issuance of a proposed waiver to chancellor-designate Cathleen Black." The city Legislature's black, Latino and Asian caucus is on the case as well.
The group wrote to Steiner, "Her apparent lack of preparation to be chancellor is extremely troubling, in light of the challenges she will confront." But Bloomberg continued to defend his choice, and the secrecy surrounding it, saying, "You don't go and call everybody and say. ... 'Do you want to apply publicly?' That's just not the way you would ever get the best and the brightest." True, but you'd probably find an educator somewhere in there.
What's getting critics the most riled up is that Black asked for patience after her appointment to get up to speed on the city's educational issues. Joshua Greenman at the Daily News argues that while Joel Klein didn't have an education background, he had a passion for education that Black has not yet demonstrated. He writes, "Can you envision a wartime Secretary of Defense pleading for patience so he can get up to speed on drone strikes in Pakistan, civilian casualties in Afghanistan and the arguments on both sides of ditching Don't Ask, Don't Tell?...Anyone with a deep commitment to public education would have been sufficiently up to speed to be able discuss at least the outlines of the issues on the day she was selected."
UPDATE: State Education Commissioner David Steiner says that Bloomberg may directly submit a waiver to allow Cathie Black to become the Schools Chancellor, but it is unclear whether or not he plans to grant that waiver.