PG (cont): "Murphy lamented that the idea of merging some or all of the county's 43 school districts rarely comes up for discussion.
I've talked about mergers of school districts, plenty. Wilkinsburg, Sto Rox, and even Woodland Hills' history is on my radar.
However, the A+ Schools group, and the Mayor's Commission on Public Education -- group that Tom Murphy had a had in forming -- FUMBLE constantly. They are absent. They don't have open meetings. They don't publish minutes. They don't invite outside voices who have knocked repeatedly at their doors. They blacklist. They operate just as Tom Murphy does.
Furthermore, until 2000, schools were a topic that was without even a breath of Tom Murphy's concern. He avoided all interactions and comments about schools at every turn. The people at Pittsburgh Public Schools knew Tom Murphy and Tom Cox only when they would rush to them for a TIF (tax favor for some hair-brained corporate welfare scheme).
Then in 2000 and 2001, my campaign for Mayor and that of James Carmine, Ph.D., professor who teaches many teachers, talked long and hard about schools. That can of worms got plenty of shaking from us then and it was an area that was totally foreign to Tom Murphy and Grant Street.
We need to put schools and districts and mergers and re-organizations into the discussions. Bring it on. Start by insisting that A+ Schools (an on-going front organization) meet with me and begin to address my long-list of serious concerns.