Mike Bloomberg on Education
Mayor of New York City (Independent)
When I left I think it was 23 out of 25 were from New York City. You can improve schools. And we cut the gap between the wealthy kids and the poor kids and how they tested. We actually cut it dramatically.
You can do those things if you try to work together and get people to cooperate. And you do it by reaching out and I've always done that. My company's 20,000 people, and we deal all over the world.
And in the end, rich or poor, no matter your ethnicity, orientation, gender, whatever; we all want to have recognition and respect and that's exactly what I know how to do. I'm a manager. And I had 300,000 people that I supervised. Pulling people together, making them feel that they're part of the solution is what management is all about. That's what I do.
BLOOMBERG: I'm not sure they're appropriate every place. In New York City, they provided parents with an alternative. The charter schools are mixed in with the non-charter public schools, because our charter schools are public schools, as well. They've helped each other.
Q: Has it worked in NYC?
BLOOMBERG: When I came into office, zero NYC schools were in the top 25 of the state. When I left, 23 out of 25 were from NYC. We've cut the gap between the rich and the poor. We've made an enormous difference in all of the options that parents have. I raised teacher salaries by 43%. I put an extra $5 billion into our school system. I value education. It is the only way to solve the poverty problem is to get people a good education. And rather than just talk about it in New York, we actually did it.
Mike will make sure people can access unemployment insurance benefits to help pay for career and technical training programs. He also will launch a pilot program to give people federal student aid for eligible short-term certificate programs.
Mike believes that college should be available to all Americans, regardless of income, doubling the size of Pell grants and removing barriers for DREAMers and formerly incarcerated students.
The tax bill [passed by Congressional Republicans and signed by President Trump in December 2017] does nothing to address these challenges. In fact, it makes each of them worse.
EDUCATION: The bill, by limiting the deduction for state and local taxes, will make it harder for the localities to raise money for education. The burden will fall heaviest on cities with poor students, making it harder for millions of children to escape from poverty--and leaving more and more businesses with fewer qualified job applicants.
Bloomberg said the poor in the U.S. need better education. By the end of his life, he said he's going to write a book about why the poor remain poor. "It's always the poor that get screwed," said the founder of Bloomberg L.P.
Today, we are seeing hundreds of years of scientific discovery being challenged by people who simply disregard facts that don't happen to agree with their agendas. Some call it "pseudo-science," others call it "faith-based science," but when you notice where this negligence tends to take place, you might as well call it "political science."
"It's scary in this country, it's probably because of our bad educational system, but the percentage of people that believe in Creationalism is really scary for a country that's going to have to compete in the world where science and medicine require a better understanding."
What is disturbing, however, is the ease with which celebrities and national figures have disparaged public education. What do they know about the issue other than what the read or hear? The last time any of them probably stepped in a classroom was when they attended high school. I don't pretend that there aren't problems in urban schools. But let's leave the education business to the educators.
The perfect example [is that] Bloomberg is anticipating municipal cuts that could amount to a billion dollars [of reduced state aid]. Bloomberg has already warned that a cut of that magnitude would mean that he would have to lay off as many as 15,000 teachers in the city. That figure amounts to the number of teachers that NYC has hired over the past 5 years.
Bloomberg has already called for the power to terminate ineffective teachers first. The NYC teachers' union has strongly condemned Bloomberg's call for the abolition of tenure and his layoff plans.
For starters, he was going to win control of the public schools, liberate 1.1 million students from a deadly bureaucracy and a greedy teachers' union--a goal that had defeated his 3 immediate predecessors. Getting kids through high school at last, with diplomas they deserved because they really learned something, was going to be his enduring contribution to a future America.
"You show me one social problem that won't be obliterated or ameliorated if people had a better education. I don't think you can," he says. The subject triggers a memory of one of the new movies Bloomberg has watched from opening to closing credits--"Charlie Wilson's War," the 2007 film about a Texas congressman who had covert dealings with Afghanistan. In the last scene, Bloomberg noted, Wilson (played by Tom Hanks) could not persuade his congressional colleagues to appropriate $1 million to rid Afghanistan of the Soviets. "They wouldn't have a million dollars for education. It's a fact. I go to the movies once a year and I fall asleep. I didn't fall asleep this time."
Nothing on Bloomberg's agenda has generated as much attention as education.
As Bloomberg ran for his 3rd term, [others] confidently predict that the city schools--more than 70% black or Hispanic--will be the 1st urban system to match the performance of students as a whole around the state.
Improvement in the schools under Bloomberg is indisputable. Questions turn on the extent of that improvement--what the numbers mean and whether they are really reliable.
His stubborn insistence on banning the use of cell phones in public schools mystified and angered New Yorkers, more convinced than ever that the mayor, personally BlackBerry-addicted, was out of touch with day-to-day concerns of parents and students.
We ended social promotion; we lengthened the school day to provide extra help for struggling students; we worked to expand the number of charter schools; we cut the bureaucracy and re-directed that money into the classroom; we even raised our teachers’ salaries 43% [and instituted] a new program of merit pay for our principals.
Source: Speech at “Ceasefire! Bridging The Political Divide” meeting , Jun 18, 2007
It took us years of pushing him to eliminate "social promotion." He just didn't want to do it. Crew agreed with me and he said, "Well, I'll get around to it." But he never got around to it.
Are we using technology as an excuse not to teach how to think and how to work with others? Is the money spent on hardware discouraging the best teachers and limiting the curriculum?
I vote to take the computers out of the classroom in the early grades. We should focus on teaching the basic skills of reading, writing, arithmetic, logic, concentration, cooperation, personal dress, social interaction, and hard work.
|Other candidates on Education:
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Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
CEO Don Blankenship (Constitution-WV)
CEO Rocky De La Fuente (R-CA)
Howie Hawkins (Green-NY)
Jo Jorgensen (Libertarian-IL)
Gloria La Riva (Socialist-CA)
Kanye West (Birthday-CA)
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Rep.Val Demings (D-FL)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
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External Links about Mike Bloomberg:
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Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
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Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
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