Bill de Blasio Offers No Hints on Schools Chancellor

Bill de Blasio speaking to reporters today.

Bill de Blasio speaking to reporters at Columbia University today.

Nearly three weeks after his election, Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio has yet to decide who will run the city’s public schools.

Asked for a status update today during a rare public appearance, Mr. de Blasio offered reporters eager for any tidbits about his transition efforts few hints.

“I will say I appreciate the question. I don’t think it’s quite time to go over that,” he said, following an education speech at Columbia University. “The conversations are just being arranged now, so let us get a couple more days down the road and we’ll be in a position to give you some more.”

Last week, Mr. de Blasio acknowledged that he had interviewed three candidates being considered for police commissioner: former top cop Bill Bratton, Chief of Department Philip Banks III and First Deputy Commissioner Rafael Pineiro.

But when it comes to picking the person who will oversee the education of the city’s more than 1 million public school students, he said less progress had been made.

“Folks I’ve worked with in education over the years I’ve turned to in the last days to get a sense of, you know, the candidates and the possibilities, but we’ll have a lot more to say in a few days,” he added.

Among the names being floated as likely contenders are former Baltimore schools chief Andres Alonso; Josh Starr, a former DOE official who now heads schools in Montgomery County, Maryland; Kathleen Cashin, a member of the state Board of Regents; and former DOE official Carmen Farina, a longtime de Blasio advisor who was a local superintendent when the mayor-elect was serving on a Park Slope school board.