Last month District 15 in Brooklyn announced the elimination of all screening processes for admission to middle school. (Yes, even the performing arts one).) Instead of taking into consideration grades, test scores and more, Park Slope’s 11 middle schools will assign seats by lottery, with 52 percent of slots in every school set aside for… Continue reading Who Will (And Won’t) Benefit From Unscreened NYC Schools
Earlier this month, The Atlantic ran a piece entitled, Teens Are Protesting In-Class Presentations. Taylor Lorenz wrote: “(S)tudents have started calling out in-class presentations as discriminatory to those with anxiety, demanding that teachers offer alternative options…. “Nobody should be forced to do something that makes them uncomfortable,” says Ula, a 14-year-old in eighth grade, who,… Continue reading Should Schools Push Kids Out Of Their Comfort Zones?
“How’m I doin’?” Ed Koch used to ask, when taking the temperature of the Gotham electorate. How are you doing, Mayor de Blasio, specifically regarding New York City traditional public schools’ showing in the just-released “gold standard” assessment called NAEP, short for the “National Assessment of Education Progress”? Don’t ask. Or, more productively, let’s dig… Continue reading How Are De Blasio’s School Improvement Plans Doin’? Some Answers from NAEP
Even before Spring Break kicked off in New York City, my email box was flooded with offers of what I could do to “enrich” my children over that time period. They could learn to code. Or cook. Or write a novel. Sharpen their basketball/tennis/lacrosse skills, design an outfit, or take part in a musical theater… Continue reading Is An “Unenriched” Spring Break Worth Living? (Hat-Tip: Socrates)
Hundreds of public school parents joined education reform organization StudentsFirstNY and other advocates on the steps of City Hall today to urge new Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza to hit the reset button on Mayor Bill de Blasio’s failing education agenda. The parents want Carranza to deviate from the path laid out by former Chancellor Fariña and… Continue reading Parents to Chancellor Carranza: “It’s Time to Hit the Reset Button on Mayor de Blasio’s Failing Education Agenda”
In response to my posts about how New York City parents can raise the odds of their children getting into a Gifted & Talented public school program, a reader wrote to sarcastically congratulate me on destroying what had previously been a perfectly even playing field. Her child, it seems, took the G&T test with absolutely… Continue reading Is NYC Education an Even Playing Field For All Families?
In the 1993 movie, Groundhog Day, Bill Murray’s cynical anchorman is doomed to relive the same day, over and over again, until he learns his lesson. (For the local angle, it was also a Broadway musical, last year.) With the holiday that inspired the movie coming up this Friday, February 2, what better time to… Continue reading Why Every Day Is Groundhog Day In New York City Schools (UPK Edition)
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.
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
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?