Edward Seto, Former D20 Superintendent
by Benjamin Fang
Aug 28, 2018 | 5160 views | 0 0 comments | 465 465 recommendations | email to a friend | print
When Mayor Bill de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza proposed a drastic change to the admissions process for the city’s specialized high schools, Asian-Americans, and in particular Chinese-American communities, were up in arms.

Edward Seto, a former superintendent in Brooklyn and a Chinese-American himself, believes he knows why.

“I think they feel that what is being done is politically driven and it’s not fair,” he said.

Seto, an opponent of the mayor’s plan, charges that City Hall made the proposal without properly vetting it or holding public hearings.

“They tried to push legislation through at the eleventh hour, and they found they didn’t have enough support,” he said. “I really believe that both the mayor and the chancellor truly knew that they don’t have the support in the legislature.

“But at least they can claim that they fought the fight,” he added, “and at the end of the day, when they don’t get their way with the legislation, they can say, ‘we tried.’”

What also infuriated the Asian-American community, Seto said, was that de Blasio did not meet or talk to community leaders before forming the plan.

“There was a sense that we don’t even have to meet with you or talk to you because we don’t care what you say,” he said.

But the plan was shot down in Albany, and the Chinese-American community has awoken in outrage. Seto said Asian-Americans have “historically” been much too quiet on many issues, but not now.

“I thank the mayor and the chancellor for picking this issue,” he said, “because I think they have aroused the attention of the Asian community in a way that no other issue probably would.”
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