Vote 7-1 in favor of submitting a racial balancing plan that will do nothing except kick the can down the road. I understand that sentiment, but cheers to the sole dissenting BOE member, Peter Von Braun (for whom I’ve had a mostly critical view of until recently) for stating that the Emperor has no clothes.
“I find that the racial-balance law has no educational virtue whatsoever and that we should focus on improving the educational achievement of the minority kids in the community and not perpetuate the silliness of thinking that moving kids on a percentage basis is going to have any benefit whatsoever,” he said.
“I find that irrelevant to the document presented to the board,” replied Jennifer Dayton, the board’s vice chairman. “I do not find mention of that. I’d like to know if you could please point out in the document where you see that discrepancy.”
“I find the whole process defines the intent that I discussed,” von Braun responded.
And while we’re praising men of principle, here’s to someone I don’t know, but admire:
Harry Fisher, a former Board of Estimate and Taxation member and the father of a Greenwich High School sophomore, argued for a more combative approach.
“I think it’s time to stand up to the state and just say no,” he said. “This does nothing for achievement. Moving kids around does nothing for achievement. We should put achievement first. We should concentrate on those aspects that bring achievement and forget about the arbitrary nature of racial balance.”