NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza on Monday passionately defended his race-based agenda as he unveiled the next steps in his move to diversify and desegregate city schools.
Fed up and mad as hell, Carranza unloaded.
“There are forces in this city that want me to just be quiet. There are forces in this city that want me to be the good minority and just be quiet, don’t say a word, don’t bring the race issue up. I will not be silenced. I will not be quiet,” Carranza told CBS2’s Marcia Kramer.
Furious over stories questioning his hiring practices and school diversity training, Carranza used a press conference to unveil the latest steps to make city schools more equitable to suggest his actions, unlike seven previous chancellors, are questioned because he is Mexican.
“As a man of color, you watch what the next attacks are going to be,” Carranza said.
Web Extra: Carranza Announces Diversity Initiatives:
The chancellor’s comments came as he announced he had agreed to implement 62 recommendations from a school diversity task force to better address the needs of a school population that is 70 percent minority.
“Today’s a big deal,” Carranza said.
The panel’s recommendations designed to change the three “Rs” to the five “Rs.”
* Race and enrollment
* Restorative justice
Among the new steps:
* Purchasing text books that reflect diversity
* Reducing disparities in how students are disciplined
* Creating student leadership teams
* Developing high-performing schools outside of Manhattan
* Tracking the diversity of school staff, both teachers and administrators
The chancellor offered no time frame for accomplishing all the initiatives or a price tag.
“I’m hopeful we will see substantive work every year to change the current status quo,” Carranza said.
“What today represents for all of us is a passion for a New York City where every single one of our children, they are going to get the social mobility they deserve,” said Maya Wiley of the Diversity Advisory Group.
Matthew Diaz, a high school senior from the Bronx, was also a member of the panel.
“I wanted to see curriculums that represent every community that make up the city. I wanted to see school faculty that looks like everybody in the city,” Diaz said.
The plan did not deal with enrollment changes to desegregate schools. That plan is expected to be developed and made public sometime this summer.