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Why You Do NOT Want Me On Your Education Council

As they have already done with Kindergarten, Gifted & Talented, and Universal pre-K applications, the New York City Department of Education has pushed back their deadline for parents wishing to run for a spot on various education councils, including Citywide Council on High-Schools, English Language Learners, Special Ed, and several District offices. The final forms… Continue reading Why You Do NOT Want Me On Your Education Council

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School Choice Goes To the Movies

Everything anyone needs to know about school choice – who benefits from it and who opposes it – was summarized in the first few minutes of the movie Hidden Figures… and in the trailer right before it. Hidden Figures, which won the SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast, stars Oscar winner Octavia Spencer,… Continue reading School Choice Goes To the Movies

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Diminishing Choices: Why NYC Kids’ Pre-K Affects Where They Go To College

New York City kids are coming to the end of the 2017 application cycle, with general education Kindergarten as well as all Middle School and High School placements set to be released next month. Yet, once again, families were not fully informed of all their choices, entering the process unaware that options diminish as students… Continue reading Diminishing Choices: Why NYC Kids’ Pre-K Affects Where They Go To College

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Is the US Education Bar Set Too Low For All Kids?

Earlier this month I suggested that grouping New York City schoolchildren by age rather than ability would address two issues that stymie the NYC Department of Education: strict birthday cut-offs that ignore readiness and the perennial shortage of Gifted and Talented seats. In this post I cited a report which asserted that, in some American… Continue reading Is the US Education Bar Set Too Low For All Kids?

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Why Parents Should Have Final Say About All Aspects of School Choice – Even the Weather

The first flake had yet to hit the ground on Thursday, February 9th when New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called for a Snow Day and announced that all public schools would be closed. His premature reaction was likely a response to similar circumstances in 2014, when he chose to keep public schools open… Continue reading Why Parents Should Have Final Say About All Aspects of School Choice – Even the Weather

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Grouping Kids By Ability – Not Age – Would Solve Two Major NYC School Problems

I have written before about two major problems NYC parents pinpoint regarding public schools: The majority of children who qualify for gifted programs don’t get a seat due to a lack of space NYC’s birthday cut-off, December 31, means a quarter of children are forced to start Kindergarten before they turn 5 These two problems… Continue reading Grouping Kids By Ability – Not Age – Would Solve Two Major NYC School Problems

Blog · New York City

Bill de Blasio’s Universal Pre-K Program: Neither Free, Nor Full-Day, Nor High-Quality

Applications for Round 1 of New York City’s Universal Pre-K (UPK) program are due on Friday, February 24, 2017. That’s President’s Day Week, by the way, which means that schools will be closed during the final five days parents are technically allowed to be touring and and making their ranking decisions. Colorful posters are hanging… Continue reading Bill de Blasio’s Universal Pre-K Program: Neither Free, Nor Full-Day, Nor High-Quality

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It’s Not Rocket Science: How To Improve Science Teaching in NYC Schools

With 1.1 million New York City public school students desperately needing help with their science education, we are fortunate that, on January 11, 2017, The American Museum of Natural History unveiled its upcoming Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education and Innovation. Projected to open in 2020, the 235,000 square-foot Gilder Center will include six Family… Continue reading It’s Not Rocket Science: How To Improve Science Teaching in NYC Schools

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Cui Bono: Who Really Benefits From Dual Language Education?

Late last year I wrote about how the Upper West Side rezoning plan intended to desegregate a handful of elementary schools could end up resegregating them in a new way through the addition of a Gifted & Talented program to PS 191, currently serving over 70% Black, Hispanic, and Free Lunch students. Bringing in a G&T… Continue reading Cui Bono: Who Really Benefits From Dual Language Education?

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Three Pitfalls of Cuomo’s “Free” College Plan for New York State Students

With much fanfare and press releases, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced his Free College plan for families earning less than $125,000 a year. There are many problems with his proposal, not the least of which is that “free” only covers tuition. As the mother of a New York City 17-year-old currently going through… Continue reading Three Pitfalls of Cuomo’s “Free” College Plan for New York State Students