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Hey Adolfo, You Don't Have To Leave The Party To Want Better Schools!

In this morning’s New York Daily News, former Bronx Borough Prez (and former Obama Urban Affairs Director) Adolfo Carrion eviscerates the United Federation of Teachers for being an “embarrassment” and “standing in the way of progress” over new teacher evaluations.

It certainly has looked like a Freak Circus, with Mike Mulgrew as the ring leader. But that’s not the point.

Carrion, whose own kids went to city public schools, is saying the kinds of things that most New Yorkers are saying this week as it dawns on them that the UFT cares little about either quality public schools or (believe it or not) the integrity of the collective bargaining concept.

But then he goes overboard:

Last year, I became a political independent to help demonstrate that, as a city, we can change this kind of corrosive atmosphere. Negotiations between government and organized labor should be moments when new ideas are debated, improved and implemented — not when respective sides hunker down and political brinkmanship distracts us from the issue at hand.

Say it aint so, Adolfo. You don’t have to leave the Democratic Party if you believe that teacher union leaders should be part of the solution rather than a cynical driver of the problem.

As the last few years have shown, the Democratic Party mainstream now accepts that possibility as a core of its belief system. The problem isn’t you, Adolfo. It is the likes of the United Federation of Teachers and the Chicago Teachers Union who are operating on the margins.

Come on back, brother…

- Joe Williams