The union representing school principals in New York City wants state officials to take over the city's education system amid disagreements with Mayor Bill de BlasioBill de BlasioEMILY's List announces early endorsement of Hochul More than 200 women, transgender inmates to be transferred from Rikers Island Achieving equity through mediocrity: Why elimination of gifted programs should worry us all MORE (D) over preparedness for the upcoming school year.
The New York Times reported Sunday that the executive board of the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators voted unanimously to approve a motion of no confidence in de Blasio's plan to reopen schools for in-person learning this year, a process set to begin this week.
Mark Cannizzaro, the union's president, told the Times that schools still lack adequate staffing, though he added that the union was not considering a strike at this time. De Blasio's administration has twice delayed the start of in-person classes so far this year due to ongoing concerns presented by the COVID-19 outbreak, and most students have begun remote learning for the semester.
In-person classes for K-12 students are set to begin this week in the city, with Cannizzaro promising that principals will report to schools as planned.
“I think parents should be confident that any child that arrives at a building will be given the utmost care,” he told the Times.
School principals in the city "must now look staff, parents and children in the eye and say that they have done all they can to provide a safe and quality educational experience, but given the limited resources provided them, this is becoming increasingly difficult,” he added to the newspaper.
Cannizzaro added that the school system will likely need hundreds more teachers to adequately begin in-person learning this week for students of all ages, according to the Times.
A city spokeswoman defended de Blasio's leadership in a statement to the newspaper.
“For the past six months, we’ve worked with our labor partners to navigate completely uncharted waters and accomplish our shared goal of serving students this fall,” the spokeswoman said. “We’ll continue this work to guarantee a safe, health and successful opening for all."
A spokesperson for the state Department of Education confirmed to the Times that the agency was monitoring the beginning of in-person classes in New York City but did not comment further.