Even before COVID-19 struck in earnest, the 2019-2020 school year seemed more riddled with screw ups than usual (and that’s saying something). There were the traditional Parent Portal malfunctions when it came to applying kids to every grade level, from Universal Pre-K through High School. Mayor Bill De Blasio first refused to close schools in… Continue reading It’s Not a Plot, It’s Incompetence: Is the NYC Department of Ed Deliberately Undermining Some Schools?
(This is a guest post by Matthew Ladner, executive editor of redefinED. He has written numerous studies on school choice, charter schools and special education reform, and his articles have appeared in Education Next; the Catholic Education: A Journal of Inquiry and Practice; and the British Journal of Political Science. He is a graduate of… Continue reading Teachers Union Prez Says NYC Schools Have Been Fixed—But For Whom?
When speaking about what was learned regarding teaching and studying in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Robert Pondisco summarized the situation nicely in this tweet: The lessons of the past few months are that everything works for someone, nothing works for everyone, and that the well-resourced and motivated student—or one with engaged and pushy parents—has… Continue reading Are All Teachers Equally Good? What Parents Can Learn From Watching Their Child’s Remote Instruction
War metaphors have been flying hot and heavy these past few months, as politicians, statesmen, and journalists search for ways to characterize our fight against COVID-19. They leave ordinary people wondering how we can do our part. What’s COVID-19’s version of Rosie the Riveter, air-raid wardens, victory gardens, collecting scrap metal, rolling bandages, or driving… Continue reading Holding Out For a Hero: How You Can Help Heal NYC (School Edition)
(This is a guest post by Tim DeRoche, author of A Fine Line: How Most American Kids Are Kept Out of the Best Public Schools, published on the 66th anniversary of the Brown v. Board of Education ruling.) The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted issues of educational access in our public schools, since there are stark… Continue reading Do NYC School Zones Violate Federal Law?
(The author of this guest post wishes to remain anonymous.) We have all been hearing about looming budget cuts for NYC public schools in the fiscal year beginning July 1st, 2020. We also know that September’s students will need a tremendous amount of support, whether they are in buildings or at home. While it may… Continue reading How Upcoming Budget Cuts Might Affect Your Child’s School
Ever since New York City School Chancellor Richard Carranza advised colleagues that one should “never waste a good crisis” in response to the Coronavirus pandemic, NYC parents have been in a panic. They assume he’ll use it as a backdoor method for ramming through all the changes he hasn’t been able to make via the… Continue reading Never Waste a Good Crisis: How NYC Families (And Teachers And Advocates) Can Take Advantage, Too (Part #1)
(The author of this post wishes to remain anonymous.) Based on my recent experience with the middle school admission process, I can say that there are many issues with the new system. First of all, removing the appeals process makes things worse and quite difficult. For example, my kid got a surprisingly low score on… Continue reading Zero Transparency & Communication: NYC Mom Rages Against New Middle School Waitlist
(This is a guest post by Dana Kaplan. Dana has her MA in Early Childhood Education with an additional certification in Gifted Education. Dana joined PS 33, Chelsea Prep for the 2006-2007 school year. During Dana’s tenure at PS 33, she taught Pre-K for two years, launched the ICT-Kindergarten class, and independently created, piloted, and… Continue reading How To Choose a Gifted & Talented Program For Your Child
In March, the New York City Department of Education announced they would be cancelling state tests for the 2019-2020 academic year. Then, at the end of April, they revised the grading system so that those in elementary school will receive a final Meets Standards or Needs Improvement assessment, while those in middle school might also… Continue reading No Tests, No Grades, No Problem: What NYC Can Still Do