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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

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“He Couldn’t Read”: A Teacher Confronts Illiteracy

Sean Davenport has a provocative piece in Chalkbeat about his journey from disaffected student to teacher at (now closed) Theodore Roosevelt High School in the Bronx. On his first day there in his 10th grade English and Speech class, he told the students to take turns reading aloud from a text. He recounts this exchange… Continue reading “He Couldn’t Read”: A Teacher Confronts Illiteracy

New York City · State Legislature

In Speech, Mayor de Blasio Gives Short Shrift to School Improvement; Curtains for Chancellor Fariña?

In today’s New York Times, Kate Taylor reports on NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s State of the City speech and his curiously scant discussion of his  Renewal Schools Program. As I’ve reported before (see here,  here, and here),  the program’s outcomes are lackluster at best, yet the Mayor has trumpeted his plan as a panacea… Continue reading In Speech, Mayor de Blasio Gives Short Shrift to School Improvement; Curtains for Chancellor Fariña?

Blog · New York City

Why I’m Taking My Child Out of One of Mayor de Blasio’s Renewal Schools

When I found out my child would be attending Wadleigh Secondary School for the Performing & Visual Arts, one of New York City’s “Renewal Schools,” I was hopeful. I went to Wadleigh when I was a girl; I knew it was struggling, but I thought the new focus and resources that came with the Renewal… Continue reading Why I’m Taking My Child Out of One of Mayor de Blasio’s Renewal Schools

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Dear Carmen Fariña: What Are Charter Schools? Chopped Liver?

Today NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña has an editorial in the Daily News in which she defends “public education” — and, more specifically, the City’s traditional  school system —  from alleged accusations that “they are violent, dysfunctional and that their students leave school without any knowledge.” In fact, claims Fariña, “here in New York City, by… Continue reading Dear Carmen Fariña: What Are Charter Schools? Chopped Liver?

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Beyond Staples: How Parents Benefit from School Accountability

If you’re a parent like me, at the start of each school year you eagerly learn all about the course content your child will study, the enrichment opportunities available, the field trips your child will take, and the school supplies your child will need as you brace yourself for that evening’s trip to Staples. If… Continue reading Beyond Staples: How Parents Benefit from School Accountability

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“In New York City, the schools that actually prepare kids for college is so small”: Parents and Administrators Bemoan Mayor De Blasio’s School Improvement Failure

“There are probably at most 20 to 25 [NYC] public high schools that are preparing kids for what I would consider rigorous college-level work.” That’s Rhea Wong, executive director of Breakthrough, a non-profit that provides support to low-income New York City students who strive to graduate from college. And, contrary to even the most modest… Continue reading “In New York City, the schools that actually prepare kids for college is so small”: Parents and Administrators Bemoan Mayor De Blasio’s School Improvement Failure

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How’s Hizzoner’s School Improvement Plan Doing? An Interim Report

In January 2013, just before Bill de Blasio was sworn in for his first term as New York City’s mayor, a reporter asked him what he wanted his legacy to be. He replied that he wanted to be known as “the education mayor.” Three years into his first term he might ask, as Ed Koch… Continue reading How’s Hizzoner’s School Improvement Plan Doing? An Interim Report

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NYC’s Renewal Schools Programs: “A Place to Reward Cronies and Dump the Unfit”

Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Carmen Fariña’s Renewal schools program, their signature school improvement plan, has been “stocked,” according to today’s NY Post, with “bureaucrats who were ineffective and tainted by scandal in previous school jobs.” In other words, the Renewal program is functioning like an alternative “rubber room” that parents allege is “a place… Continue reading NYC’s Renewal Schools Programs: “A Place to Reward Cronies and Dump the Unfit”