The City Council speaker and Democratic candidate for mayor said she wants to add more gifted and talented seats and find ways to enroll more Black and Latino students in the city’s elite programs.
This week eighth graders will find out if they were accepted to the city’s most competitive high schools. Judging from past admissions data, most students will come from middle to upper class neighborhoods. But there’s also a low-income section of Brooklyn where families have figured out what it takes to get in.
Eighth grade students hoping to get a coveted spot in a specialized high school take the admissions test starting this weekend. Students from the Urban Assembly School for Applied Math and Science in the Bronx share their thoughts on preparing for the exam.
A recent legal complaint charges that the city’s admissions policy to specialized high schools excludes black and Latino students, particularly at Stuyvesant and Bronx Science. What’s it like to attend the specialized high school with the highest percentage of black and Latino students? Students from Brooklyn Latin tell us.
Civil rights advocates say too few black and Latino students are getting into New York City’s eight specialized high schools. Questioning the reliance on one standardized test as the sole requirement for admission to the schools, they filed a complaint with the federal government.
Chester Finn Jr., a former assistant secretary of education and co-author of “Exam Schools: Inside America’s Most Selective High Schools,” says he wishes more could be done for the country’s brightest students before they hit the ninth grade.
The Department of Education this month is wrapping up a series of high school admission workshops. The last two this summer will focus on specialized high schools admissions: they will be held on Tuesday, July 24, at the Prospect Heights Campus in Brooklyn, and Thursday, July 26, at the Fiorello H. La Guardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts in Manhattan.
Calls and comments streamed in when WNYC asked about the recent news of cheating at Stuyvesant High School. Several former Stuyvesant students said cheating was fairly widespread and others complained the emphasis on tests pushed kids to employ dubious tactics to get the best score possible.
In response to the low number of Bronx students who have been admitted to the city’s elite public high schools in recent years, Borough President Rubin Diaz Jr. has recommended a change in the admissions process to place more weight on grade-point averages and essays, and less on a standardized exam. City officials said they had no plans to move away from a test-based admissions policy.
Bryan Stromer is an eleventh grader at NYC Lab High School, a place where he is happy and thriving. But he wound up at Lab by default, after another school that interested him could not provide the special education services he needs. Now on the Citywide Council on Special Education, he writes about his hope that the city’s upcoming changes in special education will make more schools accessible, giving students more options when choosing a high school.
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