Accountability · Finding the Right School · School Choice

Is Parental Engagement Necessary For a Child’s School Success? A Personal Story.

Celia Scott Wickham wasn’t just an HHLA board member. She was also my mother-in-law. On Friday, February 16, 2018, Harlem Hebrew Language Academy Charter School (for those tracking such things, one of NYC’s most diverse public schools at 36 percent White, 30 percent Black, 29 percent Hispanic) dedicated the day to celebrating their neighborhood. Classrooms… Continue reading Is Parental Engagement Necessary For a Child’s School Success? A Personal Story.

Finding the Right School · School Choice

Why Everyone  In NYC Has School Choice…And Why Everyone Doesn’t.

It’s National School Choice Week, which makes it the perfect time to discuss why everyone in New York City has School Choice. And why everyone doesn’t. In theory, NYC students have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to educational options. There is Universal Pre K in public schools, charter schools, community centers, and private… Continue reading Why Everyone  In NYC Has School Choice…And Why Everyone Doesn’t.

Finding the Right School · School Choice

Diversity: You Keep Using That Word. I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means

Martin Luther King Day weekend came right on the heels of New York City’s public school Kindergarten application, Kindergarten Connect, scheduled to close on Friday, January 12, 2018. However, as I kept predicting, they extended the deadline to Friday, January 19, 2018, at the last minute. Due to the earlier stated deadline, I spent the… Continue reading Diversity: You Keep Using That Word. I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means

Accountability · Finding the Right School · School Choice

What Makes a “Good’ NYC School?

With Kindergarten Connect applications due this Friday, January 12 (unless the Department of Education decides to, once again, push back their own deadline), I have been hearing from dozens of parents looking for help with finding a “good” school for their child. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years, it’s that different… Continue reading What Makes a “Good’ NYC School?

Finding the Right School · School Choice

A “Polite Cousin” of Hypocrisy

(This is a guest post by Pete Cook which originally appeared on his blog, “Retort: Correcting the Record on Education Reform.” Pete became involved in education reform in New Orleans Public Schools as a 2002 Teach For America corps member and has worked in various capacities at Teach For America, KIPP, TNTP and the Recovery School District.)… Continue reading A “Polite Cousin” of Hypocrisy

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Will a New Chancellor Mean a New Direction for NYC Public Schools?

The end of 2017 brought the announced retirement of Carmen Fariña as New York City School Chancellor. Regarding her replacement, Mayor Bill de Blasio, according to Chalkbeat, “emphasized that he is not looking for someone to shake things up but rather wants  someone who will follow through on the course that he and Fariña set out.” Remember those issues… Continue reading Will a New Chancellor Mean a New Direction for NYC Public Schools?

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Top 5 NYC School Issues That Enraged Parents in 2017 – And What Will Happen In 2018

2017 was a big year for New York City school news. Universal Pre-K was rolled out for 3 year-olds, even as the program for 4 year-olds struggled. There was a contentious elementary school rezoning on the Upper West Side, middle-school admissions came under the microscope, and yet another plan to diversify Specialized High Schools went… Continue reading Top 5 NYC School Issues That Enraged Parents in 2017 – And What Will Happen In 2018

Accountability · Blog

Why Is the Mayor Expanding School Initiatives That Aren’t Working – And Limiting Those That Do?

For the past 50+ years, every mayor has pledged to fix New York City schools, and the current office-holder, Bill de Blasio, is no exception. He is, however, somewhat unique in that whenever a signature initiative has been proven ineffective, his response is to double down and announce its expansion. He has been equally intransigent… Continue reading Why Is the Mayor Expanding School Initiatives That Aren’t Working – And Limiting Those That Do?

Accountability · Blog

The New York City DOE Chooses Cash Over Kids

Those of us in the education arena argue all the time but here’s something we all agree with: the most important factor in raising student achievement is great teachers. The New York City Department of Education has chosen to ignore this factor by forcing principals from 39 schools to hire 41 teachers from what was… Continue reading The New York City DOE Chooses Cash Over Kids

Finding the Right School · School Choice

Mistakes Parents Make When Ranking NYC School Choices, From Pre-Kindergarten to High School

As I wrote last week, it’s school application time  for 2018 in New York City! Public high school applications are due on December 1 (excluding Specialized schools). Public Middle-School applications will become available in November and are also due on December 1. Kindergarten Connect, for all public school general ed programs, is scheduled to open… Continue reading Mistakes Parents Make When Ranking NYC School Choices, From Pre-Kindergarten to High School