Too Big to Fail

Mayoral control of schools in the nation's biggest districts.

Every three months, GOOD releases our quarterly magazine, which examines a given theme through our unique lens. Recent editions have covered topics like the impending global water crisis, the future of transportation, and the amazing rebuilding of New Orleans. This quarter's issue is about cities, spotlighting Los Angeles, and we'll be rolling out a variety of stories all month. You can subscribe to GOOD here.
Though it educates 617,000 students at more than 800 schools, employs more than 31,000 teachers, and commands a $5.1 billion budget, the Los Angeles Unified School District continues to struggle with a dismal 52-percent graduation rate. Hoping to improve the situation in 2005, L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa tried and failed to seize control of the district. His mayoral contemporaries in Chicago and New York have both taken over their school districts and run comparatively centralized top down operations.
New York City Department of Education\n
Students 1.1 million
Schools 1,700
Budget $21 billion
Graduation rate 63 percent
After Mayor Bloomberg took office, he took control. Thirty-two community school districts were consolidated into 10 instructional regions and the Board of Education became the DOE. Bloomberg has the power to appoint the schools chancellor, and recently hired former Hearst Corporation head Cathie Black for the top job.
Chicago Public Schools\n
Students 409,000
Schools 675
Budget $6.6 billion
Graduation rate 50 percent
Outgoing Mayor Richard M. Daley took over CPS in 1995 and holds the power to appoint the Board of Education and a schools CEO. Most school sites also have a decision-making body called a Local School Council, made up of the principal, teachers, parents and community members.
Learn more about the battle over L.A.'s massive school district here.

Between Alexa, Siri, and Google, artificial intelligence is quickly changing us and the way we live. We no longer have to get up to turn on the lights or set the thermostat, we can find the fastest route to work with a click, and, most importantly, tag our friends in pictures. But interacting with the world isn't the only thing AI is making easier – now we can use it save the world, too.

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Good News

An anonymous White House official claims President Trump cruelly limited Hispanic immigrants in their new book, "A Warning."

The book, to be released on November 19, gives an alleged insider account of the Trump White House and paints a picture of the president as a chaotic man who lacks the mental and moral acumen required for the job.

The anonymous staffer says that Trump once feigned a Hispanic accent and made fun of women attempting to immigrate to the U.S.

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via KTVU / YouTube

The 63-year-old Oakland-Alameda Coliseum, currently branded the RingCentral Coliseum, is one of the most decrepit sports venues in America.

The home to the the NFL's Oakland Raiders (until they move to Las Vegas next season) and MLB's A's, is notoriously known as the Black Hole and has made headlines for its frequent flooding and sewage issues.

One of the stadium's few positive aspects is its connection to public transportation.

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Hero Video
Yad Vashem

Since 1992, the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous has been holding reunion ceremonies between Holocaust survivors and rescuers once a year. But the tradition is coming to an end, as many have died or are too frail to travel. What might be the last reunion of its kind took place when a 92-year-old woman met up with the two surviving family members that she helped hide during the Holocaust, and their descendants.

Sarah Yanai and Yossi Mor introduced Melpomeni Dina (nee Gianopoulou) to their almost 40 family members, all decedents of the Mordechai family, the family of seven that Dina and her two sisters hid during WWII. "There are no words to describe this feeling," Dina told the Jeruselum Post. "It is very emotional for us to be together again."

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via Facebook / Autumn Dayss

Facebook user and cosplayer Autumn Dayss has stirred up a bit of Halloween controversy with her last-minute costume, an anti-Vaxx mother.

An image she posted to the social network shows a smiling Dayss wearing a baby carrier featuring a small skeleton. "Going to a costume party tonight as Karen and her non-vaccinated child," the caption over the image reads.

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