Big-City Mayors' Control of Schools Yields Mixed Results
There was a sense of déjà vu in June when Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg of New York summoned reporters to a Harlem elementary school to announce that he had succeeded in winning control of that city's public schools.
That's because Mr. Bloomberg was just one more in a succession of mayors who are seeking more say in how their cities' schools are run. Since the early 1990s, mayors have expanded their roles in school district operations in such cities as Boston; Chicago; Cleveland; Detroit; Harrisburg, Pa.; Oakland, Calif.; and Washington. Yet, despite the strategy's surge in popularity, research on whether it works has been almost nonexistent.
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