Thursday, April 17, 2014

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Quinn Criticized By De Blasio At Mayoral Forum On Education

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Education was the topic of another forum for mayoral candidates, and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn again found herself criticized for her close ties to Mayor Michael Bloomberg. NY1's Josh Robin filed the following report.

In Bill de Blasio's book, Christine Quinn is barely getting a passing grade as City Council Speaker.

In a pair of sharp attacks at the Eagle Academy in the South Bronx, the public advocate lit into his rival for not standing up to Mayor Michael Bloomberg's educational policies.

"Speaker Quinn, you had 12 years to challenge the mayor on his obsession on high-stakes testing, and you didn't do it," de Blasio said.

De Blasio is trying to make it a two-person race with her, because he could lose support if former Rep. Anthony Weiner enters the race.

Quinn didn't respond to de Blasio at the forum, but a spokesperson said, in part, "While Bill de Blasio continues to employ a desperate attack strategy, Chris Quinn continues to lay out a forward-looking agenda."

At the forum, Quinn was critical of some of Bloomberg's stances, including testing.

"We need to move more schools to the portfolio assessment model," Quinn said. "I've advocated for that and help expand it. It allows schools to put together a portfolio of what they're judged on."

Limiting testing was a popular position among the six. They also want to keep mayoral control of schools, but better involve parents.

William Thompson, a former president of the Board of Education, also said that the next chancellor has to be an educator, a position shared by all but Quinn.

"Through the Joel Kleins, the Cathie Blacks and all due to the respect to our current chancellor," Thompson said.

Thompson seemed to be the second choice of the crowd. City Comptroller John Liu got top marks from some in the audience.

He blasted having charter and traditional schools share space.

"It sends a terrible, terrible message to the kids in that building that there could be this kind of dichotomy, I would say classism, within the same school building," Liu said.

Also at the forum was former Brooklyn City Councilman Sal Albanese and former Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrion, who has already secured the Independence Party line.

One issue where the candidates agree is allowing single-sex schools. It was a crowd favorite, as the Eagle Academy, where the forum was held, is an all-boys school. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP