|Pay No Attention to that Ed Reformer Behind the Threats|
Are we supposed to be quaking in our boots now that the rookie teacher who couldn't is making some more threats from his usual safe distance in Albany? John King flexing his muscle at Buffalo is nothing new. He's been doing it for years. Mainly because Buffalo has his number and routinely calls his bluff pantsing him in front of the entire state every time he flexes. Here is a pre-quel to his latest load of shite, this batch coming from an earlier expulsion dated Oct 20, 2011 : (watch how he credits everyone but teachers and City Hall, lumping teachers in for a blanket party of blame alongside the slugs of the 8th and 4th floors.)
Clearly there is a philanthropic and business community that is dedicated to the success of the schools. And over the last two years, there's a degree of parent activism that has emerged, a community of parents that desperately want to see student performance improve.
On the other hand, I think it was clear from the poor quality of the school improvement grant plans that were submitted that there are some real challenges -- the knowledge and skills necessary -- at the central office level as well as at the school level.
Ahh yes the philanthropists like Bordeaux Bob Wilmers, former CEO of M&T Bank. We all owe Bob a huge debt of gratitude for footing the bill for the search that netted James Williams fresh from his Edu-Armageddon in Dayton Ohio. In Dayton Jimmy Dubz provoked a teacher's strike, opened and abandoned charters all over creation and left an $18 million crater nobody even knew existed until the time J Dubz was here tangling his fishing lures in the foliage of Spaulding Lake. Oh yes and the parent activism led by none other than good old race riot Radford whose earlier claim to fame if I remember correctly involved starting up club after club as a student at ECC then pocketing all of the clubs stipends each club was given by the college. When they caught up to him old Sam started raising Cain in the school dining hall and ended up cuffed and stuffed by BPD and pleading guilty to the missing money and the attempted riot on campus. Now we're supposed to keep a straight face when he tells us he's a concerned parent at the head of the DPCC tossing paid parent facilitator gigs at all the buildings to some friends and demanding the high school football coaches hand over their coaching jobs to some of his other homies who played a year or two of junior college football. If you talk to white parents many will tell you it's obvious the DPCC has nothing for them and some minority parents will tell you they too are shut out and the group exists mainly as Radford's personal stepping stone to whichever hustle will pay him the most when this one runs out of steam and free pizza and babysitting for all of his meetings.
King doesn't think he needs to know any of these details. In his myopia and hubris he thinks he can play his kitty fooling the cat game with the citizens of the City of No illusions. He will succeed on some level with the self hating proles whose psychotherapy consists of listening to Fox News and Limbaugh convincing them that unions were created by Satan and anyone with benefits is robbing some poor corporation of its tax breaks on Learjet fuel. On the other hand though as I heard said of Rahmbo Emanuel, scratch a bully and you'll find a punk. King's act is going to wear thin around here. He may enjoy a brief honeymoon period with Rev. Pridgen and Sam and maybe Sampson, Carl and McCarthy as they represent the "school reform" voting block of the Board. But people are going to get a look at this guy and his lack of people chops will shine through like the mean kid's magnifying glass on cajun blackened horsefly. Folks will match this guy with his comment back when, the time he said : "This isn't rocket science. There are best practices. And the charge of the district, in my perspective, is to go learn those best practices." "Best practices" of course can be found here on a neat little pdf cranked out by the ed reformers over at ReformEdBuffalo. You'll also be glad to see the front man for the Buffalo Parents Group or the District Parent Coordinating Committee, so called, Sam Radford can be seen posing in the masthead pic with a group whose rasion d' etre consists mainly of demonstrating its hostility to Buffalo Public Schools, unions and teachers in general. If that strikes you as odd collect 5 paying attention points. Here is a comment from Buffalo Rising, a rag that usually serves as a mouthpiece for school reform and employs Superintendent body guard, personal assistant Elena Cala to get her message out whatever her message happens to be this week. Check out the comment: SlickWilly
John King, likewise, is a big mouth who likes to make threats. He's made plenty of them in the past and Buffalo has always taken him with the requisite grain of salt. If he's going to talk shit and try to flex then I suggest he set up a time and date for a little town meeting where everyone can share their thoughts with him about the excellence of his reformy leadership. Of course he won't since he sneaks in and out of B-Lo like he's George Bush flying into Bagram airbase. What are you so scared of Johnny? Oh wait I think I know the answer to that one.