Thursday, September 20

Liveblogging the City Council hearing on parent engagement

Education Committee chair Robert Jackson opened today's proceedings with some familiar complaints: why don't people know what's going on at the DOE until after decisions are already made? how do you know who to call at the DOE when you need help? what's wrong with 311?

Now Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott and OFEA CEO Martine Guerrier are testifying. Walcott has gone over the familiar litany of efforts the DOE has made in the last few years to formalize parents' voice — and they're nothing to shake a stick at. Walcott also notes that "the Mayor's doors at City Hall are and always have been open to parents." I had no idea — has anyone ever tried to meet with the mayor in his City Hall office?

Walcott has just said "probably 95 percent" of parent coordinators originally hired are still employed by the schools that hired them. There's no way that's even close to being true. Does anyone want to fact check? Still, the creation of the parent coordinator position was a huge step forward for the DOE and the best of the parent coordinators are tremendous assets to their schools.

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