“They were bullshit!” said my Dad. I burst out laughing . My soft-spoken father, who most often could be found reading history books and playing chamber music when he wasn’t teaching social studies at John Bowne High School in Flushing, so vehemently negative about the courses he took while earning his M.A. in education! At… Continue reading “Why Would Anyone In Their Right Mind Lower Standards?”: Charter Schools Win a Round
Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Renewal School Program is about to hit its three year anniversary. In a speech in November 2014 he vowed to “demand fast and intense improvement” for the 78 schools in the program, just as earlier that year in Riverside Church he made a commitment to “shake the foundations” of the school… Continue reading Renewal Schools? Not a Whole Lot of Shakin’ Going On
Last week our new blogger Tina Posterli, a parent on Long Island, described her frustration with New York State’s teacher evaluation system. For those catching up, Gov. Cuomo, the State Legislature, and the Board of Regents originally signed off on an accountability system that would link 50 percent of student outcomes on standardized tests to… Continue reading Gov. Cuomo: “Only 38 percent of the students are graduating at class-level, but 99 percent of teachers are doing well.” What’s the Fix?
That’s Mike Petrilli of the Fordham Foundation in an article published last night on PoliticoPro. In this deep dive into the regression of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s commitment to education reform, Eliza Shapiro surveys the last three years of education politics in the most segregated state school system in the country. Because this piece is only… Continue reading “The rollback of education reform in New York has been the most dramatic in the country.”
One of my four children has multiple disabilities because of a genetic mutation called Fragile X Syndrome and, while we’ve had disputes with our local school district, Jonah’s assorted services—speech and occupational therapy, modified course content and instruction, vocational training—always take place during the school day. Not so in one of the poorest sections of… Continue reading A Dead Canary in Hunts Point: “Vouchers” Instead of Special Education Services
Below is a press release from StudentsFirstNY, which relays reactions of New York City parents to the news that Mayor Bill de Blasio and Chancellor Carmen Fariña will force placements of 400 of the 882 teachers assigned to the Absent Teacher Reserve. The ATR is more popularly known as “the rubber room,” via Steven Brill’s 2009 New… Continue reading Mayor de Blasio Turns His Back on Low-Income Parents Protesting His Forced Placement of 400 Teachers
The New York State Department of Education is in the final throes of tweaking its plan for complying with America’s new school education law called the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). In this brave new world of bloated state control and anorexic federal oversight, parents are increasingly dependent on their state’s commitment to honest and… Continue reading How Honest Is New York State’s Public Education Plan?
Mayor Bill de Blasio won. New York City families lost. Governor Andrew Cuomo, Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan, and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie get, straight from my hometown, a big fat Bronx cheer. Early Thursday morning the Senate approved a bill that grants NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio two more years of control of the… Continue reading Who are the Winners and Losers in Albany’s Decision to Extend Mayor de Blasio’s Control of NYC Schools?
“If you’re giving a kid a diploma based on a Regents score, does that pass mean that the kid has sufficient math skills?” asked Kim Nauer, education research director at The New School’s Center for New York City Affairs. Not in New York. Although, of course, students and their parents have no way of discerning… Continue reading What Do You Need to Pass the Algebra 1 Test In NYS? Not Much.
The Wall Street Journal and Chalkbeat report today on a new report by Aaron Pallas, an education researcher at Teachers College at Columbia, who finds that Mayor Bill de Blasio’s much-vaunted Renewal Schools Program isn’t actually helping students. This wasn’t supposed to happen. Two and a half years ago, early in his first term, the… Continue reading “No Bad Schools,” Mr. Mayor? Do the Math.