440 North Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19130
May 21, 2012
Dear members of the School Reform Commission,
I am very happy to hear that you have decided to delay voting on the reorganization plan for the School District until next year. This move shows some sensitivity to the needs and desires of the community: something that has been felt very lacking in recent months. Yet this delay will not completely overhaul the perception that many residents of Philadelphia have that you are not always fighting in their best interests.
At the very beginning of your tenure you often discussed the idea that you need to gain the public’s confidence. I truly applaud that idea but unfortunately have seen much of the opposite being accomplished over the past few months. Instead of using transparency in order to ensure equal opportunity for public comment there has been a lot of dealing behind closed doors. One of the main concerns is that Thomas Knudsen, the Chief Recovery Officer, has not been in the public eye, yet is received $25,000 each month.
If you truly want to be perceived as advocates for the community then you need to ensure the community has a voice and that you listen to it. The delay in the vote on the reorganization plan is a good start. But if you really want our trust, be a bit more clear in answering our questions (including what Thomas Knudsen is doing all this time).
One Letter Per Day Campaign