Yesterday, I published a post blasting Tom Moran’s piece on hedge fund billionaire David Tepper’s entry into the education reform debate. Moran, to his credit, posted a reply in the comments; I replied to him afterward.
Rereading the piece, I want to apologize for an ill-advised sentence:
If Moran really cared about education, he’d have insisted Tepper flesh out his positions and talk specifics.
It is unfair to imply that Moran does not care about education, and I apologize for saying so.
The rest of my post, however, stands.
Moran gave up a huge piece of prime real estate in the Sunday Star-Ledger to espouse the views of a man who has no standing to talk about education reform (other than his incredible wealth). Both his interview of Tepper and the accompanying editorial took nasty swipes at the NJEA without any serious attempt to either analyze or even just clarify the issues at stake.
This is a personal frustration for me, as we here at Blue Jersey painstakingly spelled out the case against corporate education reform in our six-part Ed Reform 101 series (“corporate reform” is a term coined by Diane Ravitch).
Moran has called on me to drop my “bitter personal tone,” ostensibly to engage in a substantive discussion. I will, on one condition: I call on him to stop taking the position that “If the NJEA is against it, I’m for it!” so we can begin a serious conversation.
Tomorrow, I’ll begin a series of short posts reiterating why the type of reforms pushed by Tepper, Moran, Governor Christie, Acting Education Commissioner Cerf, and others in the New Jersey corporate reform movement will not work; in fact, they will almost certainly harm New Jersey’s students for years to come.
I challenge Moran – and, for that matter, others who share his belief in these prescriptions – to show me where I’m wrong.
Tom, you have the much larger platform, and you admit that this is the central issue that will consume state government after the election. It seems to me that the time has come for you to answer the case that critics like me, Ravitch, Leonie Haimson, Bruce Baker and others have put together in opposition to the reforms you champion.
And I promise: it will be nothing personal. What do you say? Ready for a friendly conversation?