Now, he's making the same promises in New Jersey. How do you think this will turn out?
ACTING Commissioner, the folks you worked with at the NYCDOE were the ones who urged the NYC press to file freedom-of-information requests for the data. The weak protestations that they are only following the will of the courts are ridiculous: they started the whole thing! Your old boss, Joel Klein, always wanted the data made public. Releasing these error-ridden, unreliable ratings was always part of the plan.Yesterday, acting education commissioner Chris Cerf tried to quell worries and said he would be against public disclosure of individual teachers' scores."I don't believe in that," Cerf said in an interview last night. "It is counterproductive, and I believe it is not something we should put out. And especially putting that out in isolation, it's against everything we want to do."
Further, ACTING Commissioner, you have a history of working the press to meet your own ends. You were in charge of the "Truth Squad" at the NYCDOE that leaked information you had accumulated about Diane Ravitch to be used to savage her in the press. (Is there a similar shop currently set up in the NJDOE? Hi, fellas!)
So you'll forgive me, ACTING Commissioner, if I'm not ready to merely take you at your word on this. Your boss has already lied about our pensions, and you've been incredibly disingenuous about the state of New Jersey's schools and the "achievement gap". Why would any teacher ever believe you on this issue? As the NJEA says:
"In two and a half years, we have seen enough misinformation from this administration that, let's just say, our caution lights are on," said Steve Wollmer, communications director of the New Jersey Education Association.
That is exactly right, except we know that this administration couldn't care less about "alienating" teachers: insulting us has pretty much been Chris Christie's entire education policy.[...]"It's a disaster that shouldn't happen anywhere, and certainly not in New Jersey," said Wollmer. "If you want to totally alienate an entire generation of teachers, that's the way to do it."
There is no doubt where this is going, and no one should be fooled by Chris Cerf's pie-crust promises ("easily made; easily broken"). The only question is: what are we going to do about it?