School & District Management

Report: New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña to Step Down

By Evie Blad — December 20, 2017 1 min read
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New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña plans to announce her retirement Thursday, NBC New York reports, citing “city government sources.”

Fariña, 75, has led the nation’s largest school district for the last four years, helping to carry out Mayor Bill DeBlasio’s education agenda, including universal pre-k. The city has already started a national search for her replacement, Politico reports.

Education Week’s Denisa Superville profiled Fariña in 2014, noting that she “ended the policy of using only test scores to make high-stakes decisions about promoting students to the next grade; started programs for teachers and principals across different schools to collaborate on instructional strategies; created a senior position to oversee English-language learners, who make up about 14.5 percent of the system; and pledged extra supports for those students.”

“Supporters say that the chancellor, a former teacher, principal, and deputy chancellor in the 1.1 million-student district, has set a new tone for the New York City school system in which parents are seen as assets and morale among teachers is on the rise after years of acrimonious relations between Mr. Bloomberg and the United Federation of Teachers,” she reported.

But her work has been met with some criticism.

“Her abolishing of the Bloomberg-era letter-grade rating system for schools and reducing the reliance on test scores drew strong support from some parent groups, the teachers’ union, and researchers,” Superville wrote. “But others, such as the Foundation for Excellence in Education, the education advocacy group founded by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, attacked the changes, arguing that they will diminish transparency on how well schools are serving students.”

Photo: New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña. -- Mike Groll/AP-File

A version of this news article first appeared in the District Dossier blog.