Most of the eighth-grade students in Jeff Walton’s band class at Uncommon Schools Ocean Hill Collegiate hadn’t picked up an instrument before seventh grade. But you’d never know it from the sounds emanating from Walton’s band room one morning as students were rehearsing for their Spring Concert, a program of songs from New Orleans. Standing… Continue reading “I Am Always Amazed How Fast They Can Learn”: Uncommon Schools’ Music Immersion Program
I’m detecting a trend. Recently, The Atlantic ran a piece that catalogues the Trump administration’s disregard of civil rights protections for Americans (and aspiring Americans) during the tenure of Attorney General Jeff Sessions. “Across every issue, from criminal-justice reform to voting rights to LGBTQ rights,” said Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of the Leadership Conference on Civil… Continue reading DeVos Is Stripping Away Civil Rights Protections for Students With Special Needs
No one seemed more surprised at the obliteration of ten-term, fourth-ranking U.S. Representative Joseph Crowley than victor Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a self-identified Democratic Socialist. Last week, in a gobsmacking upset, she won the primary for New York’s 14th Congressional District. Politico described her today as “not just a full-blown political sensation but an international news phenomenon.”… Continue reading What Are Ocasio-Cortez’s Views on Public School Choice?
Data for [School Year] 2016 –17 contained in this report shows promising movement toward ensuring that students are educated in the least restrictive environment appropriate for their individual needs. This is a statement from the New York City Department of Education’s most recent Annual Report on Special Education, which boasts of the “substantial improvement” and… Continue reading Wesley’s Story, Part 3: “This Is A Bigger Issue Than Wesley,” or How the NYC DOE is Failing Students with Disabilities
The media is afire with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to diversify NYC’s most competitive high schools — Stuyvesant, Bronx Science, Brooklyn Tech — by eliminating the SHSAT admissions test. Instead of basing student suitability for these ultra-competitive schools on a single test, he says, students will be admitted based on classroom… Continue reading The Lack of Diversity in NYC’s Elite High Schools Has Nothing To Do With the Admissions Test.
Today is the last day of Mental Health Awareness Month so I’m sharing this story of my younger sister Carla. A different version appeared on New Jersey Left Behind and this one was first published at Education Post. My parents, Jerry and Emily, had three daughters. I’m the oldest, followed by Carla two years later, and… Continue reading My Sister’s Battle With Mental Illness Taught Me Never to Stand for Pretense.
When she was in elementary school at PS 16 in Williamsburg, Jeanette Garzon Terreros started showing up late for school and missing homework assignments. As a way to set her straight, Gazon Terreros said her mom decided to enroll her in Uncommon Schools Williamsburg Collegiate, the charter school located in the same building, one floor… Continue reading Entire Graduating Class at Uncommon Charter High School in Bed-Stuy Is Heading Off to College!
Assemblywoman Latrice Walker worked the group of energetic children gathered Thursday in the Brownsville Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library like a master teacher. “Every time you hear a name, I want you to clap twice,” Walker told the students ranging from kindergartners to second graders as she read the book “Stevie,” by John Steptoe.… Continue reading No Sliding For These Brownsville Students This Summer!
New York School Talk is eighteen months old and eager to expand our network of writers — parents, teachers, students, education leaders — who share our conviction that all New York City’s children, regardless of income and ethnicity, must have access to high-quality schools. Do you have opinions on or insights into aspects of New… Continue reading Do You Have Something to Say About NY Education?
Just before I turned five years old, my parents moved me and my two younger sisters from our apartment on Jerome Avenue in the Bronx to a Queens neighborhood zoned for P.S. 115. While my old elementary school is now quite segregated (77 percent Asian, 18 percent White, 22 percent eligible for free and reduced… Continue reading A Personal Story about Gifted and Talented Programming in NYC