But what is obvious is that once again a major decision—one might even say a revolutionary decision—affecting the most important public institution in the city and the lives of 1.1 students has been taken without any public consultation. Once again, the leaders at Tweed met behind closed doors with their management consultants and their experts in corporate governance, along with chosen staff members, and reached decisions that will have sweeping implications for the public school system.
Something is terribly wrong with this scenario. Public agencies in a democracy are not free to make major policy changes without public consultation, public feedback, public review, and other efforts to forge a consensus. That is the way democratic governance is supposed to work. What we have now seems to be the behavior and actions of a monarchy or a privately held corporation that has no stockholders; its leaders can do whatever they wish without seeking public input or public assent.