In a stunning article, Richard Rothstein has dissected Joel Klein’s claim to have grown up in poverty, living in a public housing project, saved by a “great” teacher.
This story is used cynically by Klein and other advocates of privatization to attack public education, teachers and unions. (Wasn’t that great teacher a member of the union in NYC?).
Rothstein says that Klein was not poor, that he actually lived in a public housing project built for white middle-class families. Rothstein further argues that these projects were part of a larger pattern of government subsidy for racial segregation. Klein’s story, he concludes, does not prove what Klein so often claims about the irrelevance of poverty.
This is a must-read.