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Michael R. Bloomberg

New York State Democrats Flunk an Education Test

Instead of supporting the mayor’s agenda for revitalizing New York City schools, lawmakers in Albany are throwing up hurdles.

Put their needs first.

Put their needs first.

Photographer: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images

If anyone wonders why America’s urban school districts are in such deep crisis, the answer can be easily seen by looking at New York.

Recently, the Democratic-controlled New York state legislature passed a bill watering down mayoral control of New York City’s public-school system. Twenty years ago, our administration fought for and won mayoral control after decades of incompetent management by corrupt and politically driven school boards. The system we inherited was a case study in failure, with high-school graduation rates long stuck at or below 50%.