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
Kindergarten Connect, the online form that New York City parents use to apply their children to Kindergarten for 2018, opened on Tuesday, November 28. It is scheduled to close on January 12, 2018. Every year, I receive frantic emails from parents who made a mistake in ranking their choices, and are now stuck with a… Continue reading 5 Mistakes Parents Make When Ranking Schools on Kindergarten Connect – And How You Can Avoid Them
It’s school application time in New York City! Parents of four-year-olds are taking advantage of every to advantage to prep them for entry into public Gifted & Talented programs, private schools, and the hybrid Hunter College Elementary. Parents of 5th graders are wrestling with the convoluted process of middle-school admissions. Meanwhile, 30,000 8th graders took… Continue reading Do Parents Know How To Choose the Best School in NYC?
New York City’s Department of Education (DOE) opened Request for Gifted and Talented Testing forms on Tuesday, October 3, 2017. Children who will be entering Kindergarten, 1st, 2nd or 3rd grade in September of 2018 may apply. (After that, no one in NYC is presumably either gifted and/or talented.) The DOE also offers a Gifted… Continue reading 5 Secrets NYC Department of Ed Doesn’t Want Parents To Know About Gifted & Talented Programs
Hunter College Elementary School (HCES) opened its kindergarten 2018 application on Friday, September 1. Despite the misnomer of it being a Department of Education-run public school (it’s closer to a charter), HCES is considered New York City’s top gifted school. Over 2,500 Manhattan four year-olds vie for 50 kindergarten spots. Their families believe the (no-tuition) accelerated… Continue reading Pros and Cons of Starting Accelerated Kindergarten Before Age 5: NYC Mom Tells All!
My older son graduated from a New York City Specialized High-School this June. Now it’s my younger one’s turn to prep for the qualifying Specialized High-School Admissions Test (SHSAT). “You realize how ridiculous this is,” my 13 year-old posited after taking yet another practice test from one of the many books we’ve purchased for the… Continue reading Why I Make My Son Study For the “Ridiculous” SHSAT
In New York City, parents beg, borrow and steal (well, technically, they pay hundreds of dollars for test prep) to get their kids into public school Gifted & Talented (G&T) programs. But one of the issues that gets overlooked with district G&T’s is that they dilute overall school accountability. There are two kinds of public… Continue reading NYC’s Gifted & Talented Programs Obscure Parents’ Ability to Judge School Performance
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”?
No, New York City is not getting rid of elementary school Gifted & Talented programs in an attempt to make everyone feel special and lower student achievement. However, DNAInfo’s June 13th article, “Gifted Programs Ditched for Hands On Learning for All at More NYC Schools,” has convinced multiple hysterical folks – who probably only read… Continue reading Are Affluent Parents Fighting Against Gifted Ed for Underserved Kids?
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