An influential advocacy group representing Latinos has come out in favor of Mayor de Blasio’s continued control of the public schools – just as the state legislature begins to examine the hot button issue.
Hispanic Federation President José Calderón released a statement supporting de Blasio’s control of the schools ahead of a Monday press conference announcing creation of 47 new dual-language pre-kindergarten programs for city students beginning this fall.
Calderón, whose group is the first major national organization to weigh in on the issue this year, said de Blasio deserves to have control of the public schools because of his efforts to increase equity for children of color.
“No one in our city’s history has done more to ensure that all of our city’s children have the advantages of a high quality early education than Mayor de Blasio,” Calderón said.
“It is an incredible gift of education and multi-language acquisition for our children and their families that will strengthen communities across our city for generations to come.”
The Hispanic Federation is a national umbrella group of more than 100 Latino non-profit organizations, including Aspira of New York and the Committee for Hispanic Children and Families.
De Blasio’s control of the public schools is due to expire in June and some lawmakers in Albany have indicated they would seek limits on the extension of his authority.
The Hispanic Federation’s statement likely marks the start of a flurry of endorsements from backers who’ll seek to help de Blasio cement his control of city classrooms through the end of his current term in 2022.
De Blasio said the Federation’s statement of support underscores the importance of mayoral control of the public schools.
“The Hispanic Federation understands first-hand the influence mayoral control of education has on Latino communities,” de Blasio said.
“The expansion of our dual-language program is yet another testament to all we can accomplish together in continuing to make New York City the fairest big city in America,” he said.