Accountability

Do Kids Care If Their Teachers Are Certified? Should Parents?

Last week, New York City schools received two pieces of contradictory news, which made for an interesting contrast in how teachers are viewed. In the first, the Department of Education will now require principals to staff vacancies with teachers from the Absent Teacher Reserve, also known as “the rubber room,” where pedagogues who have been… Continue reading Do Kids Care If Their Teachers Are Certified? Should Parents?

Blog

Now That He’s Got Control, What Will NYC’s Mayor Do About “Chaos, Gridlock, and Corruption”?

On Thursday, June 29, 2017, the New York State Legislature voted to extend Mayor Bill de Blasio’s control of New York City schools for two years. The move was heralded by everyone from NY Governor Andrew Cuomo, who proclaimed it “the best way to provide education,” to former Education Secretary Arne Duncan, who asserted that… Continue reading Now That He’s Got Control, What Will NYC’s Mayor Do About “Chaos, Gridlock, and Corruption”?

School Choice · State Legislature

Who are the Winners and Losers in Albany’s Decision to Extend Mayor de Blasio’s Control of NYC Schools?

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?

School Choice

Success Academy Wins Award for Closing Achievement Gaps (And Scores Two Victories in One Week)

Success Academy Charter Schools, New York City’s largest charter management organization that operates 41 elementary, middle, and high schools in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens serving 14,000 students, just won the 2017 Broad Prize for Public Charter Schools. The prize awards $250,000 to the public charter network that, according to a press release, “has demonstrated the… Continue reading Success Academy Wins Award for Closing Achievement Gaps (And Scores Two Victories in One Week)

School Choice

From Dream to Reality: The Entire Class at this Brooklyn Charter School Is Going to College!

Kiara Damon first started thinking about college when she entered fifth grade at Williamsburg Collegiate Middle School, a Brooklyn charter school run by the Uncommon Schools network. “It was always college, college, college,” Kiara said. “We were always the class of 2021, not the class of 2017.” Kira was one of 87 graduating seniors from… Continue reading From Dream to Reality: The Entire Class at this Brooklyn Charter School Is Going to College!

Blog · School Choice

A Political Play or Pushback Against Mediocrity? Why We Need Charter Schools in the Suburbs

Education activist Derrell Bradford recently argued that yes, we do–but mostly because it broadens the base of clout-heavy supporters and makes it more palatable for self-interested politicians to “do the right thing” on school choice. I would agree, but for a very different reason posited by Mr. Bradford: We need competition to rouse suburban schools… Continue reading A Political Play or Pushback Against Mediocrity? Why We Need Charter Schools in the Suburbs

School Choice

Traditional School or Charter School? One Parent’s Story

I have never been much of a proponent of charter schools. I am the proud product of traditional public education from kindergarten through 12th grade and I always felt that public charter schools take away money, space, and resources from traditional schools. I remember that when I made my first attempt to go back to… Continue reading Traditional School or Charter School? One Parent’s Story

Blog

A Few Suggestions for Mayor de Blasio’s Second Term Education Agenda

New York City’s mayoral primary is on September 12th, six months from now, and it’s looking excessively likely that incumbent Bill de Blasio will win the primary and then win a second term in November. Given the odds, here’s a few suggestions from an admittedly edu-centric bystander on what the Mayor can do to improve… Continue reading A Few Suggestions for Mayor de Blasio’s Second Term Education Agenda

Blog

Lack of School Choice Isn’t the Problem In NYC: It’s The Lack of Good Choices

Elizabeth A. Harris and Ford Fessenden’s May 5th New York Times piece, “The Broken Promises of Choice in New York City Schools,”  comes to the conclusion that the inequities in the City’s admissions system can be attributed to choice itself. In reality, however, it’s not having multiple high school choices that leads to over half of… Continue reading Lack of School Choice Isn’t the Problem In NYC: It’s The Lack of Good Choices

Blog

Dear NAACP: This Charter School Embraced My Son After a Traditional School Tried To Push Him Out

This is a guest post by Felecia Brown Butler. Felecia was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY. She is a dedicated mother of three beautiful sons and a fierce advocate for her community and great schools for all children. When my son was in Kindergarten, he didn’t seem to be learning like the other children.… Continue reading Dear NAACP: This Charter School Embraced My Son After a Traditional School Tried To Push Him Out