Joe Williams, Executive Director of the Democrats for Education Reform, and I are quoted in the Gotham Schools' story.
The state Assembly earlier this month passed legislation to continue the structure largely as is, with the NYC Mayor controlling the majority of appointments on the Panel of Education Policy.
The new Senate Democratic leader, Sen. John Sampson, opposes mayoral control and wants changes. The problem, however, is that even if the Senate went into session (a big if), Sen. Sampson is not in position to affect changes based on the 31-31 split and assuming all his fellow Democrats agreed with his changes. Moreover, Assembly Speaker, Sheldon Silver, reiterated his disinterest in returning to Albany to amend his very reasonable bill to accommodate the Senate.
The Speaker's position is exactly right especially given the fact that there is no way of knowing if the Senate will do anything, including gavel in, much less enact a separate bill.
Gov. David Paterson, not to be left out of the discussion, is talking about calling for a "special session" to bring the legislature back to Albany this week to enact the mayoral control legislation and other bills requested by other local governments. The Governor can make the legislature return to consider his agenda of bills, but he can't make them vote on anything.
The saga continues.
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