Arne Duncan says that more schools need to be run by big-city mayors. His job success depends on it! If we don't get more intertwining between government and schools, he'll have failed as education secretary! Eeek! We need strong leadership in schools... there is too much turnover in schools where the mayor is not in control of every aspect of our lives.
Bet you under Duncan, the trains will run on time, too.
Now, look. I get that the government has a reasonably compelling interest in assuring that its citizenry is educated and all that stuff. It has a reasonably compelling interest, too, in assuring that the popcorn you buy at the market isn't laced with arsenic and asbestos (crunchy! mmm) and that the prescriptions you buy from your local pharmacy are at least tested on the Easter bunny before being released to the general public. My apologies to the Easter bunny.
We need the MAYOR in charge of the school? I mean, yeah, I'm all for local control of schools... but do we need our town's MAYOR in charge instead of the school board and the superintendent? You know, the people I'm voting for locally anyway? I'd like to vote my mayor in on the basis of his ability to negotiate good contracts on my garbage pickup, patch the potholes on my street and make sure my city's Spring on the Square has a good parade. The parade is pretty important, and we wouldn't want anything like "running the schools" to distract him.
Not to mention my *last* mayor, who turned out to be a bit of a flake after he took office. Goody for him that he wanted to fight icky oil-change places from taking the building in the center of town (you know, a service people need?). He wanted something more upscale to move in. I guess he was hoping for a poodle-grooming place that paints doggie nails or one of those upscale boutiques with a French name and boas in the window. Well, the oil change guys didn't fight him and moved on... bye...
Guess who moved in?
Porn shop. With bondage videos and spank-ware, located directly across from the McDonald's "Playplace" (not going to make crude joke here... eeew). And the porn shop had lots of great expen$ive lawyers to challenge city code. The mayor rolled over and let it happen. Yeah, the new place does have boas in the window, and a French-sounding name, so mission accomplished, I guess. Sorta.
I'm not sure, but I think somehow this applies to schools... hmmm...