Mayor Bill de Blasio traveled to Chicago yesterday for a panel discussion with three of his most high-profile colleagues, including Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Atlanta’s Kasim Reed and Chicago’s Rahm Emanuel.
With political consultant David Axelrod leading the conversation, the group acted like a lineup of old friends, ribbing each other over recent weather woes, and joining together to herald the role of cities and criticize the federal government’s lack of investment in them.
Though the bluster of the Chicago teacher strike calmed down last week, the tensions between teacher’s unions and prominent mayors have not ceased. For his part, Mayor Michael Bloomberg is siding with his Second City counterpart, Rahm Emanuel, who pushed for changes to Chicago’s public school system despite opposition from the local teacher’s unions. Mr. Bloomberg discussed the situation this morning at NBC’s third annual Education Nation Summit at the Bartos Forum of the New York Public Library.
“I think Rahm Emanuel, the mayor of Chicago, was quite right to move towards a longer school day,” he said. “I also think Rahm was right in pushing towards evaluations as a reform that the Obama administration made as part of Race to the Top.”