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Walcott Waiver Documentation

Walcott Waiver Documentation

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Published by: City Room on Apr 12, 2011
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04/12/2011

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April7,2011
THE
CITY
OFNEWYORK
OFFICE
OF
THE
MAYOR
NEWYORK,
N.
Y.10007
TheHonorableDavidM.SteinerCommissionerofEducationNewYorkStateEducationDepartmentRoom11189WashingtonAvenueAlbany,NY12234Deal'CommissionerSteiner:Asyouareaware,atoppriorityofmyadministrationhasbeenandcontinuestobeensuringthateverychildinNewYorkCityreceivesahighqualityeducationandthateverychildispreparedtosucceedinthe21
st
centurybyattendingcollegeorsecuringajobfollowinggraduation.NewYorkCityhasmadeextraordinaryprogresstowardsthatgoal,andcontinuingthatprogressisessentialtothefutureoftheCityanditschildren.WiththeresignationofCathleenBlackasChancellor,Ihaveselected
a
successorwhosecommitmenttoourchildren,understandingof
OUi'
reforms,knowledgeoftheNewYorkCityschools,anddesiretocontinueimprovingourschoolsareunsurpassed.IintendtoappointDennisM.WalcottasChancellor.Mr.WalcotthasservedwithgreatdistinctionasDeputyMayorforEducationandCommunityDevelopment,andhehasbeenintegraltothesuccessofNewYorkCity'seducationalreformsthroughouttheentiretyofmyadministration.Foralmostfortyyears,fromthetimehebeganhiscareerasakindergartenteacherthroughhiscurrentpositionasDeputyMayor,Mr.Walcotthasdedicatedhislifetoworkingoneducationalandyouthservicesissues.Hehasvastexperienceinandadeepunderstandingofthemanycomplexissuesthatfacethe.ChancellorofNewYorkCitySchools,includingdiversestudentpopulations,fiscalandbudgetarymatters,constructionandfacilities.management,theimportanceofschool-leveldecisionmaking,andthecriticalnatureofteacherqualityandwhathappensintheclassroom.Heisalsoaskilledcommunicatorwhounderstandsthevitalneedforbuildingrelationshipswithintheschoolsystemandthecommunitiesitserves,ashehasbeendoingforthreedecades.HeisexceptionallyqualifiedtoserveasChancellor.Accordingly,IwritetorequestaSchoolDistrictLeadercertificateforMr.WalcotttoserveasChancelloroftheNewYorkCityPublicSchools.StateEducationLawsection3003(3)and8NYCRRPart80~3.1O(b)(3)(iii)authorizetheCommissionerofEducationtograntaSchoolDistrictLeadercertificatetoexceptionallyqualifiedcandidateswhodonotmeetcertaineducationalandtrainingrequirements;but"whoseexceptionaltrainingandexperiencearethesubstantialequivalentofsuchrequirementsandqualifysuchpersonsforthedutiesofasuperintendentofschools."Asdemonstratedbelow,hiseducationalbackground,trainingand
 
experiencearcthesubstantialequivalentoftheCommissioner'srequirements,andamplyqualifyhimforthedutiesofaNewYorkSchoolsChancellor.Therefore,IrespectfullyrequestthatyougrantthiscertificatetoMr.Walcott.AlifelongresidentofsoutheastQueens,Mr.WalcottisagraduateoftheNewYorkCitypublicschools,havingattendedP.S.36,J.H.S.
192;
andFrancisLewisHighSchool.HereceivedhisBachelorofArtsin1973andaMasterofEducationin1974fromtheUniversityofBridgeport.HealsoreceivedaMastel'ofSocialWorkfromFordhamUniversityin1980,earninginexcessof60graduatecredits.Thus,Mr.WalcottmeetsmostoftheacademiccredentialsrequiredforissuanceofaSchoolDistrictLeadercertificate.
See
Educ.Law
§
3003(1)(a);8NYCRRPart80~3.l0(b).Mr.Walcott'sbackground,knowledge,andexperiencemakehimanexcellentchoiceforChancellor.HewasappointedDeputyMayorforPolicyin2002,andsince2006hasservedasDeputyMayorforEducationandCommunityDevelopment.Inthiscapacity,heoverseesandcoordinatestheoperationsoftheDepartmentofEducation,theNewYorkCityHousingAuthority,theDepartmentofYouthandCommunityDevelopmentandtheMayor'sOfficeofAdultEducation,aswellasreviewstheactivitiesoftheNewYorkCitySchoolConstructionAuthority,theCityUniversityofNewYork,andtheCityUniversityConstructionFund.Mr.Walcottisalsoresponsibleforcollaboratingwithcommunity-basedorganizationscitywideandcoordinatingpoliciesconcerningyouthprogramsandadulteducation.HecurrentlyservesontheboardoftheGovernorsIslandPreservationandEducationCorporation,andpreviouslyservedasCo-ChairoftheMayor'sCommissionforConstructionOpportunity.PastboardmembershipsincludeCarverBank,MunicipalArtsSociety,andPrimaryCareDevelopmentCorporation.ThroughoutmytenureasMayor,DeputyMayorWalcotthasbeenmypointpersononallCityeducationalandyouthpolicy,planningandprogrammaticefforts.HehasbeeninvolvedineverykeyeducationalpolicydecisionofthisAdministrationandtheDepartmentofEducation,includinghelpingtochampionMayoralcontrolofthe'Cityschoolsin2002andsecuringitssubsequentreauthorization;endingsocialpromotion;developingtheDOE'scapitalprogram;overseeingtheopeningofapproximately140newschoolbuildings,additionsandannexes;supportingtbeestablishmentofover350newdistrictschoolsandover100newchattel'schools;championingtheliftingofthecharterschoolcap;andadvisingontheadoptionoftheCommonCoreStateStandards.DuringhistimeasDeputyMayor,Mr.Walcotthasvisitedhundredsofschoolsandforgedrelationshipswithteachers,principalsandadministratorsateveryleveloftheNewYorkCityDepartmentofEducation.HeregularlydiscusseslabormatterswithofficialsofeveryunionrepresentingDepartmentofEducationemployees,and,asyouknow,heisregularlyincontactwithofficialsoftheNewYorkStateEducationDepartmentonmattersrelatedtotheNewYorkCityschools.DeputyMayorWalcotthasadvisedChancellorKlein,ChancellorBlack,andmeoneveryoperational,budget,andpolicyissueaffectingtheCity'sschoolsanditsstudentssince2002,andhisknowledgeofthoseissuesandofthechallengesfacingtheNewYorkCityDepartmentofEducationisbeyondcompare.Moreover,asDeputyMayorhehasgainedanunderstandingoftheCitybudgetandStateandfederalfundingstreamsthatwillbecriticalduringthedifficultbudgettimesfacingtheCity,theState,andtheDepartmentofEducation.Mr.Walcott'sdevotiontoeducationalissuesandyouthdevelopmenthasbeenthehallmarkofhiscareer.Mr.WalcottpossessesaNewYorkStatePermanentTeachingCertificateforNursery,KindergartenandGradesl-ti,andhebeganhiscareerin1974asakindergartenteacheratAmistadChildCareCenterinSouthJamaica,Queens.Afterapproximatelyoneanda
2
 
3
halfyearsasateacher,Mr.WalcottfoundedtheFrederickDouglassBrother-to-BrotherProgram,amentoringprogramforyoungboysfromdiversebackgroundsinSouthJamaica.Theprogramenlistedmentoserveas"bigbrothers'<+rolemodelsandmentors-forthechildrenintheprogram.Mr.Walcottnotonlyrantheprogrambut.alsoservedasabigbrothertotwoboys.ItisworthnotingthatMr.Walcottisstillfriendlywithhistwo"littlebrothers,"whoarenowgrownmen.WhenMr.WalcottwenttoFordhamtopursuehisMasterofSocialWorkin1977,healsowenttoworkatSpenceChapinServicestoFamiliesandChildren.Whilethere,heprovidedfostercareadoptionservicesandrancounselinggroupsforadolescentfosterchildren.HethenjoinedtheGreaterNewYorkFund/UnitedWay,whereheworkedwithnot-for-profitcorporationsandcorporateprofessionalstoadministerandallocategrantsforfostercareservices.In1985,Mr.WalcottbecametheExecutiveDirectorofHarlemDowlingChildren'sServices,wherehewasresponsibleformanagingandoverseeingallaspectsofthat.organization'soperationsandpolicy.HarlemDowlingprovided.anarrayofchildwelfareservices,includingfindingandmaintainingfosterhomes,adoptionservices,preventativeservices,andeducationalprograms,Initially,HarlemDowlingoperatedprimarilyinHarlem,butMr.WalcottoversawamergerwiththeWestSideCenterforChildrenandFamilyServices;whichpermittedHarlemDowlingtobeginprovidingservicescitywide.Thus,bythispointinhiscareerMr.Walcotthadalreadygainedsignificantexperienceineducationandyouthservices,includinghowtomanageandoperateacitywideorganizationprovidingsuchservices,andadeepunderstandingofissuesfacingyouthin.NewYorkCity.In1990,Mr.WalcottbecamePresidentandChiefExecutiveOfficeroftheUrbanLeague,apositionhehelduntilIappointedhimasDeputyMayorin2002.AsPresident,heexpandededucationalandyouthserviceprograms,includingJeter'sLeadersandBridgetoBrotherhoodprograms,HealthyStart,NorthernManhattanPrenatalPartnership,andthe140thStreetBuildingBlockProgram.Hismanyeffortscenteredonpromotingacademicexcellenceandschoolattendance,preventingdrop-outs,supportinginterracialandinter-ethnicyouthcooperation,anddevelopingcollegescholarshipprogramsthougheffectivepublic-privatepartnerships,includingwithWallStreet.TheUrbanLeague'sfocusoneducationalsoincludedpartnershipswithNewYorkCityschoolsandschoolcommunities.In1998,underMr.:Walcott'sleadership,theUrbanLeagueworkedwiththeUnitedFederationofTeachers,theCouncilofSchoolSupervisorsandAdministrators,andseveralcommunitybasedorganizationstosecureasignificantgrantfromtheBoardofEducationto
run
aschoolleadershiptrainingprogram-totrainparentstobecomeschoolleaders.WhileattheUrbanLeague.Mr.WalcottbecameoneofNewYorkCity'smostprominenteducationalleaders,In1993,MayorDavidDinkinsappointedMr.WalcotttothethenBoardofEducation,whereheservedforapproximatelythirteenmonthsandwasinvolvedinpolicies,budgetmattersandoperationalissuespertainingtoNewYorkCityschools)includingthe.appointmentofanewChancellor,RayCortines.EvenbeforebecomingDeputyMayor,Mr.WalcotthadcloseworkingrelationshipswitheveryChancellorfromtheearly19908onward,includingChancellorsCortines,Fernandez,Crew,andLevy,In1997,whenChancellorCrewsuspendedCommunitySchoolBoard5)heappointedMr.WalcottasaTrusteeandChairoftheTrusteeBoardforDistrict5.Inthatcapacity,Mr.Walcottoversawthecommunitydistrict'seducationalpoliciesforoverayear,Later.In2000,Mr.WalcottwasappointedtoserveonataskforceconvenedbyAssemblySpeakerSheldonSilverandPartnershipforNewYorkCity

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