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Can Mayoral Control Fix Broken Urban School Districts?

Tuesday March 2008


Joel I. Klein Chancellor, Department of Education, New York City

Mayoral control has emerged as among the most significant new trends in urban school reform. Beginning in Boston and Chicago in the 1990s, this governance change has now been adopted by numerous other school districts, including New York City. The strongest argument for transferring control of school systems from independent boards of education to the office of the mayor, has been the hope of achieving greater efficiency and effectiveness, through clear accountability. The Manhattan Institute’s conference on mayoral control of urban school districts will look at the record to date and explore the question of whether serious innovation requires mayoral control.


8:00 AM Registration
8:30 AM Opening Remarks: Joel I. Klein, Chancellor, Department of Education, New York City
9:00 AM Panel Discussion I: Lessons from Other Cities
Panelists: Thomas Payzant, Former Superintendent, Boston Public Schools; Senior Lecturer, Harvard Graduate School of Education
Michelle Rhee, Chancellor, District of Columbia Public Schools
Paul G. Vallas, Superintendent, Recovery School District, New Orleans
Kenneth K. Wong, Walter and Leonore Annenberg Chair for Education Policy, Director, Urban Education Policy Program, Brown University
Moderator: Marcus Winters, Senior Fellow, Manhattan Institute
10:20 AM Break
10:30 AM Panel Discussion II: Mayoral Control Reauthorization in New York City
Panelists: David C. Bloomfield, Associate Professor & Program Head, Educational Leadership, Brooklyn College
Seymour Fliegel, President, Center for Educational Innovation-Public Education Association
Diane Ravitch, Research Professor of Education, New York University
Joe Williams, Executive Director, Democrats for Education Reform
Moderator: David M. Steiner, Klara & Larry Silverstein Dean, School of Education, Hunter College, CUNY
12:00 PM Adjournment