Beth Fertig is the contributing editor for education, covering the New York City public school system for WNYC on air and online at SchoolBook.org. She has covered education in the city for more than 15 years. Beth is the author of Why cant u teach me 2 read? Three Students and a Mayor Put Our Schools to the Test (FSG Books) which grew out of a radio series on the low graduation rate for special education students. Follow her @bethfertig.
Law Proposes More Oversight of Education Department
Tuesday, May 05, 2009
New York, NY —
Two state lawmakers from New York City are introducing a bill that would subject the Department of Education to more scrutiny. Queens Assemblyman Rory Lancman says the legislation he co-sponsored with Assemblyman Daniel Squadron addresses a gray area that came about when the mayor was put in charge of the schools.
LANCMAN: Most agencies, all agencies of the city, have to follow the city's procurement rules but the Department of Education does not and that's why you see hundreds of millions of dollars in no-bid contracts.
Lancman says the Education Department's budget and the siting of new schools would also get more community oversight. The New York Civil Liberties Union supports the legislation.
A spokeswoman for Mayor Bloomberg says City Hall favors greater accountability and transparency, and is reviewing various proposals having to do with oversight, but remains committed to mayoral control.
The 2002 law granting Bloomberg control expires at the end of June without state renewal.