Cathie Black, Embattled Chancellor, Starts First Day of School


Cathie Black, Mayor Bloomberg’s newly appointed Schools Chancellor, is starting her first day on the job with a tour of schools in each of the five boroughs. (Though it remains unclear whether she had ever been in a public school building before being nominated to lead the nation’s largest school system, at least she is not taking today’s tour via helicopter.)

Black is starting her job after a bruising nominating process, but as WNYC pointed out this morning, she dodged two major bullets just last week. Snowpocalypse may have severely damaged the standing of the man who appointed her, but since it occurred during school break, Black didn’t have to deal with shutting down the school system right after starting her job.

Also, a judge ruled last week against a group suing that Black couldn’t serve because she had no qualifications.

Black’s tenure begins with the city’s first ever Chief Academic Officer, Shael Polakow-Suransky, starting as her number two. The position was created as part of a deal for State Education Commissioner David Steiner to grant Black a waiver to serve without having the necessary education credentials.

This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 3, 2011


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