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Sunday, June 2, 2019

NYC DOE Chancellor Carranza Rules With Hate

Chancellor Richard Carranza

With special education in shambles in NYC, you would think that Chancellor Richard Carranza would want to make his massive agency, the NYC Department of Education, stand for fixing this mess.


He is giving New York a piece of his mind, namely that the horrible white supremacists who have ruled the Department and harmed kids for decades are going to pay with their jobs. While he is at it, he is taking away the test for "white" high schools - the specialized high schools - which have, he alleges, denied black and brown kids equal access.

When my youngest daughter was at PS 6, (see picture below of Carmen at PS 6, and Marielle is front center), Principal Carmen Farina told parents that her goal was to bring up all the Level 1 and 2 students to a high 2 or low 3, and bring all level 4 kids down to a Level 3, and everyone would be "equal". That is a strange definition of equity, in my opinion.

What did Carmen put in place at PS 6 to dumb down the smart kids?( Smart kids = Level 4 math) She made teachers force TERC, or "fuzzy math", onto students in all classes. Many teachers told me of their dismay, but their "hands were tied". We parents got together and taught our kids classic, rigorous math and bought Singapore Math books, then showed our kids how to make their work look like fuzzy math. Thanks are due to Elizabeth Carson and her HOLD Group.

 In 2004 I wrote an article about this for my website, and how my daughter was thrown off of the Math Team at PS 6 after her article called "Why TERC?" was published in the Riverdale Review. Her math teacher told her she was too dumb and did not belong. Quickly, I had Marielle take the test for the Johns Hopkins' Center For Talented Youth, and she was accepted in both math and English. This saved her from despair. She was then accepted into NEST+M, the best K-12 public school, in my opinion, in the NYC DOE, and she made National Honor Society before entering NYU. I am still horrified when I think about how close to an emotional break Marielle came under Carmen's dumb down program.Here are the articles:



 In reference to Mr. Barnicle’s piece “Where There’s No Will, There’s No Way To Fix Schools” (Feb. 17) and Allison Gendar’s article “Ed Board Perks Under Fire”, (Feb. 12), I, a parent of four girls all now in public schools here in New York City, want to add my outrage. The children and parents in the public school system in this city have an Enron situation with the Board of Education. Only in our case we are hoping that the “company” disintegrates quickly. The Members of the Board are  famous for never contacting anyone with a problem, much less taking any action to fix it. The shooting at Martin Luther King Jr. High School was a visible result of Chancellor Levy and the Board members turning a deaf ear to months of warnings.

On October 5, 2001, I called the Chancellor’s office to discuss a problem in a school which looked illegal, and was told by his secretary, “the Chancellor never takes telephone calls from parents. Put it in writing and fax it to him, and he will respond within 7 days.” I did what she told me to do and am still waiting to hear his reply. The situation I would have liked him to look at is now worse than I originally thought.

Another bizarre example of the educational fraud our kids are being subjected to is the $millions spent on a “fuzzy math” program which is leaving our children unable to do traditional multiplication and long division. I and my fourth daughter are furious that the system is betraying her and ignoring her passion to learn the basic skills which her sisters , who were all in private school during their elementary school years, had. She wrote her thoughts below. It’s time to do something, Mr. Bloomberg.

                                                                      Betsy Combier
by Marielle Combier-Kapel
4th Grade, PS 6

Parents are making tutors crazy calling them all the time because of TERC math. Kids don’t have time to do anything because all they do after school is get tutored in math. There is no one to have playdates with anymore!

 Citywide math scores are falling, but Board Of Education officials say that the District 2 math scores on the Standardized tests are high, therefore the TERC math curriculum is a good thing. Many District 2 parents are spending lots of money on tutoring, which brings up the scores, giving the impression that TERC is good for us kids. Tutoring is great if your parents have money to spend on this.

TERC math shouldn’t be the only kind of math schools teach to their students. Just because some students aren’t that smart, the schools are sending  flyers home to parents saying that they should not teach their child traditional math which includes long division and
algorithms. I like long division!

My mom says:
“Fuzzy math condemns our kids by not allowing them to
establish an understanding of base computations which will
empower them as they reach higher levels of problem-solving.
The Board of Education policy to implement TERC math and
ONLY this curricula is assuring our kids an immediate future of
confusion, or worse, boredom, and a long-term disability in
math achievement and academic performance in non-math
subjects as well. Learning traditional math as a reference is
similar to having a Spanish dictionary when you are trying to
write something in Spanish.”
Parents are now calling other parents to find out if they
tutor their children in math or not, and are signing up my friends.

 One of my sisters’ teachers at Stuyvesant told my mom that the math at the Freshman level may have to be changed to a lower achievement level, as kids from District 2 who are getting in are having trouble with the traditionally rigorous math program. A  teacher at my other sister’s honors program told my mom that she has never seen children in 7th grade who are not able to do long division.

What may happen is that I may be unable to compete for college places because the math teaching I have received is not teaching me what I should know. Is that fair?

Then, after I was elected PTA President of the most segregated middle school in New York, Booker T. Washington Middle School 54, I saw that the Guidance Counselor was telling parents and students of the predominantly minority (black and Hispanic) programs in 7th and 8th grades that the specialized high school test, the SHSAT, was "not for them". The kids and their parents were given applications to the Harlem high schools, not the Specialized High Schools.

I could not believe what I was hearing. I thought, this cannot be true. So, I asked parents who were on my executive board (which was very diverse in terms of race) to go with me to all the Harlem middle schools, and ask parents and students whether they were given applications for the SHSAT or not. In only one instance, a boy at one of the schools told us he had an older brother who had heard about the test, so he told the Guidance Counselor he wanted to take it, did we hear that any of the kids and/or their parents were "allowed" to take the SHSAT.

And Chancellor Carranza is digging his heels into the muck:

Carranza’s friends keep cashing in

In the vast NYC Department of Education, all kids deserve to have an equal opportunity to reach their personal best in academic achievement as well as socio-emotional growth. Carranza and his cronies need to support all colors, genders, religious beliefs, and special needs of the NYC student population, and I mean the very disabled to the profoundly gifted.

Then, we can say that we value diversity and teach tolerance.

Carranza evidently left San Francisco in a racial divide, as can be seen in a comment to NY POST reporter Michael Goodwin published June 15, 2019:

Chancellor’s racial priorities
It turns out that Chancellor Richard Carranza was counting racial beans long before he got to New York. Reader Krista Donaldson writes: “I live in San Francisco and when he came to our elementary school’s PTA meeting, he told the parents (mostly white middle class) that he didn’t care about our kids — he was there only for minority kids.
“It was shocking, especially to parents who had been working hard and fundraising to make the school better for all children.
“He had a very negative impact and our schools still suffer from the damage of his tenure.”
We believe that Richard Carranza is implementing dangerous policy decisions that harm many categories of people of all ages and leave a lethal legacy. Dangerous - because what are we, the adults in the room, telling our kids? The world is black v white, and it is good to fight, oppose, destroy, instead of heal, negotiate and respect all.

This is not equity, it is hate.

Can we get Mr. Carranza out of his job, and send him packing?

Betsy Combier
Editor, NYC Rubber Room Reporter
Editor, New York Court Corruption
Editor, National Public Voice
Editor, NYC Public Voice
Editor, Inside 3020-a Teacher Trials

Richard Carranza

Schools Chancellor Carranza On Race-Based Agenda Criticism: ‘I Will Not Be Silenced, I Will Not Be Quiet’
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza on Monday passionately defended his race-based agenda as he unveiled the next steps in his move to diversify and desegregate city schools.
Fed up and mad as hell, Carranza unloaded.
“There are forces in this city that want me to just be quiet. There are forces in this city that want me to be the good minority and just be quiet, don’t say a word, don’t bring the race issue up. I will not be silenced. I will not be quiet,” Carranza told CBS2’s Marcia Kramer.
Furious over stories questioning his hiring practices and school diversity training, Carranza used a press conference to unveil the latest steps to make city schools more equitable to suggest his actions, unlike seven previous chancellors, are questioned because he is Mexican.
“As a man of color, you watch what the next attacks are going to be,” Carranza said.

The chancellor’s comments came as he announced he had agreed to implement 62 recommendations from a school diversity task force to better address the needs of a school population that is 70 percent minority.

“Today’s a big deal,” Carranza said.

The panel’s recommendations designed to change the three “Rs” to the five “Rs.”

* Race and enrollment
* Resources
* Relationships
* Restorative justice
* Representation

Among the new steps:
* Purchasing text books that reflect diversity
* Reducing disparities in how students are disciplined
* Creating student leadership teams
* Developing high-performing schools outside of Manhattan
* Tracking the diversity of school staff, both teachers and administrators
The chancellor offered no time frame for accomplishing all the initiatives or a price tag.
“I’m hopeful we will see substantive work every year to change the current status quo,” Carranza said.
“What today represents for all of us is a passion for a New York City where every single one of our children, they are going to get the social mobility they deserve,” said Maya Wiley of the Diversity Advisory Group.
Matthew Diaz, a high school senior from the Bronx, was also a member of the panel.
“I wanted to see curriculums that represent every community that make up the city. I wanted to see school faculty that looks like everybody in the city,” Diaz said.
The plan did not deal with enrollment changes to desegregate schools. That plan is expected to be developed and made public sometime this summer.

Carter Gwynn
“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”
I won’t be silenced either.

Carranza should be fixing special education instead of playing race games

, June 1, 2019
Rather than spending his time on racial flame-throwing, Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza could be working to fix some of the serious issues that plague his Department of Education — such as its massive failures in serving special-ed kids.
Last week, The City’s Yoav Gonen detailed systematic DOE dysfunction on this front, 30 years after the city made a legally binding commitment to give special-needs children the help they need.
The city now pays out hundreds of millions a year to settle thousands of cases brought over its failure to deliver services. And complaints have skyrocketed since Mayor de Blasio’s first year.
They were up 51 percent over three years by the end of the 2017-18 school year. And this year’s total, Gonen reports, topped the prior year’s in February.
Any child can be independently evaluated for special-ed needs. Each who qualifies gets an Individual Education Plan outlining what services the child should receive, such as speech therapy, a physical accommodation, limited class size, etc.
Yet the system routinely assigns kids to schools where the services listed in their IEPs aren’t even available, while schools put children in classrooms that don’t fit the specifications.
And — get this — parents filing complaints must go to Downtown Brooklyn for a hearing, which is far from a guarantee that the bureaucracy will find a solution. Some kids go years without getting the help they’re legally entitled to.
Meanwhile, Carranza devotes much of his time to attacking schools that actually work — the city’s specialized high schools, generally seen as the system’s crown jewels. His problem: A race-blind exam doesn’t produce the student racial mix that he thinks it should.
Oh, and he’s spending millions on “implicit bias” training for city teachers — who are overwhelmingly liberal but apparently need indoctrination about the “racial-advantage hierarchy.”
The chancellor loves to talk about how his “lived experiences” fuel his passion in the “fight for equity.” How about setting aside your racial and ethnic obsessions, sir, and getting to work on delivering for the city’s most vulnerable children?

Richard Carranza held ‘white-supremacy culture’ training for school admins

NY POST, May 20, 2019
City Department of Education brass are targeting a “white-supremacy culture” among school administrators — by disparaging ideas like “individualism,” “objectivity” and “worship of the written word,” The Post has learned.
A presentation slide obtained by The Post offers a bullet-point description of the systemic, supposedly pro-white favoritism that Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza claims must be eradicated from the DOE, and provides just one insight into his anti-bias training efforts.
The list — derived from “Dismantling Racism: A Workbook for Social Change Groups” by Kenneth Jones and Tema Okun — names more than a dozen hallmarks of “white-supremacy culture” that school administrators are expected to steer clear of.
“They include such dynamics as “paternalism,” a “sense of urgency” and “power hoarding,” according to the slide, which an insider said was part of mandatory training sponsored and funded by the department’s Office of Equity and Access and recently administered to principals, central office supervisors and superintendent teams.
The seminar is concurrent with Carranza’s larger push to root out “implicit bias” in the school system — an effort that some veteran DOE members blasted as creating a view of “toxic whiteness” detailed in a front-page story in Sunday’s Post.
“The training is not focused on white supremacy and white privilege,” Carranza said after a City Council budget hearing on Monday, referring to his larger campaign.
“It’s about what are our biases and how we work with them.”
The two slides were shown to top managers but were not part of a $23 million city wide implicit bias training, officials said.
The mandatory session for higher-ups included a “White Privilege Exercise” sheet in which attendees were asked to score the personal relevance of certain statements on a scale of 0 to 5.
“If a police officer pulls me over, I can be sure I haven’t been singled out because of my race,” one scenario reads.
“I can be pretty sure that if I ask to talk to ‘the person in charge,’ I will be facing a person of my race,” another says.
The DOE did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the materials used for the administrators’ training, but one adviser said that if the program’s frankness is making people uncomfortable, that’s because it’s working.
“It requires discomfort,” said Matt Gonzales, who serves as an outside adviser on the DOE’s school diversity task force and is a director of New York Appleseed, an advocacy group for school integration.
“Having to talk about someone’s own whiteness is a requirement for them to become liberated.”
Several recent attendees of the DOE’s overarching implicit-bias training sessions — mandatory for all, including teachers — have bristled at the program’s emphasis on the inherent insidiousness of “white” culture.
White employees who object when accused of harboring deep-seated bias are branded “fragile” and “defensive,” one insider who received the training has said.
But Carranza said on Monday that such skeptics often don’t realize their own biases until they are forced to confront them and that they are likely the ones who need the training the most.
“It’s good work. It’s hard work,” Carranza said. “And I would hope that anybody that feels that somehow that process is not beneficial to them, I would very respectfully say they are the ones that need to reflect even harder upon what they believe.”
Carranza also waved off allegations by at least four white DOE administrators who are poised to sue the department over their claims that, under his watch, they were demoted or stripped of duties in favor of less qualified persons of color.

“It’s always been my experience that anyone that comes in as a CEO of an organization takes a look at the organization and, based on their experience, makes some changes,” he said. “This is no different.”
The schools boss insisted that there was room on his staff for people of any race who share his emphasis on equality.
“I have some deputy chancellors that are white, but have an incredible equity lens as well . . . for making sure that historically underrepresented communities are being served,” Carranza said.
But one Manhattan middle school teacher who underwent mandatory implicit-bias training in December said she left feeling as though everything she had learned about “colorblindness” was being uprooted.
“I say they’re my students whether they’re green, purple, orange or black,” the educator, who asked not to be identified, told The Post. “We’re being told if you’re not recognizing students as African American, Haitian, Puerto Rican, Dominican, et cetera, you’re wrong.”
“It feels like I’m in a dystopian novel where all of a sudden being white is bad. All of a sudden, I’m the enemy.” 

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