Chancellor Carmen Fariña is looking forward to continuing to work with Shael Polakow-Suransky, the Department of Education’s top deputy under the Bloomberg administration, she told department staffers in an email this morning.

The message came just after Bank Street College of Education confirmed that Polakow-Suransky will become its seventh president this summer.

“I am thrilled for Shael and excited about the opportunity to continue to work together,” Fariña wrote. She added, “Bank Street is the gold standard for teacher preparation programs and child development, and as the mayor and I work to expand pre-kindergarten access, Bank Street and Shael will be key partners.”

Polakow-Suransky is the first high-level departure from the Department of Education since Fariña and the de Blasio administration took over at the beginning of the month. Fariña said in the email that she would provide more details “about what this transition means for the Department as well as our broader direction moving forward” in the near future.

“For now, I hope you will join me in wishing Shael well in his next endeavor,” Fariña wrote. The complete email is below.

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing to let you know that Senior Deputy Chancellor Shael Polakow-Suransky has accepted an offer to serve as the next president of Bank Street College.

I am thrilled for Shael and excited about the opportunity to continue to work together. Shael has dedicated his entire career to bettering New York City schools, and his tireless efforts over the last two decades have helped the City’s students prepare for success in college and beyond. His leadership, wisdom, and persistence have gained the admiration, trust, and respect of students, teachers, principals, and families across the City.

Bank Street is the gold standard for teacher preparation programs and child development, and as the Mayor and I work to expand pre-kindergarten access, Bank Street and Shael will be key partners. For this initiative to be successful, and for our progressive agenda to move forward, teachers must receive high-quality professional development, and no one knows early childhood education better than Bank Street.

Over the coming days and weeks, I will share more information about what this transition means for the Department as well as our broader direction moving forward. For now, I hope you will join me in wishing Shael well in his next endeavor.

Best,

Carmen Fariña

Chancellor

Bcc: All Principals, All Superintendents, All Network Leaders, All Cluster Leaders, All Central Lan Users