Alan Singer, former public school teacher and current professor at Hofstra University, offers free advice to the new Mayor of New York City: Ignore the New York Times, especially when it writes editorials about education policies.

In his post, he rebuts the New York Times’ editorial advice point by point.

He explains why tenure and seniority are necessary and fair.

He rejects merit pay and recommends a different salary scale:

My proposal is to raise starting salaries for starting teachers who complete a registered teacher certification program but to give a bigger pay boost after three years as a teacher. Most of the Teach for America “teachers” and Bloomberg “Teaching Fellows” are transients who come without certification and leave within three years. Pay them fairly, but reward people who earn certification and then make a long-term career commitment.

He opposes the Times’ rebuke of teachers who lost their jobs because their school was closed. His advice:  If you charge teacher salaries to the overall Education Department budget, most of this problem would be eliminated. But in addition, why waste the talents of these teachers. To help improve student performance they could be permanently assigned to schools as tutors for students who are performing poorly or as co-teachers in classrooms with high-needs students. Mayor de Blasio needs to be creative rather than punitive.

He objects to the Times’ implication that teachers need to be disciplined for unspecified abuses. His advice: No one disagrees with a clear list of offensives that would lead to discipline and potential termination. I would like to see The Times suggested list. We would probably agree on almost everything. The real issue is due process, which The New York Times may not realize is a constitutional guarantee in the United States. Given that supervisors can be arbitrary and mayors authoritarian, teachers need clear due process provisions in their contract.

Read his article. It is filled with sound ideas that the new Mayor should find interesting.

His bottom line: Good luck, Mr. de Blasio. Ignore the New York Times when it editorializes about the schools.