Posts from April 10th, 2012
April 10, 2012
At some city charter schools, Monday of spring break was earmarked for filling out next year’s class.
The Success Charter Network held its annual enrollment lottery Monday morning, selecting students for 12 schools that are set to be open this fall. The schools have about 1,200 open seats, and 12,374 families applied for them, some for more than one school, according to figures provided by the network.
About 30 percent of applicants are considered English language learners, according to the network, meaning that at least 20 percent of new students at most of the network’s schools this fall will be learning English as a second language.
The Children’s Aid College Prep Charter School also held its admissions lottery, its first ever, on Monday, using a tiered system of preferences to the neediest of 500 applicants for 60 spots in the inaugural classes. The school aims to serve high-needs students and had recruited heavily among families in the foster care system and non-English-speaking communities.
The state’s 2010 charter schools law set April 1 as the earliest allowable lottery date, and most city charter school chains held their lotteries last week before the break began. The nine schools in the KIPP network held lotteries last Wednesday. The Achievement First network, which has 11 schools in New York City, selected its students during a public lottery on Thursday, just before dismissing for spring break. (more…)
April 10, 2012
One of the Department of Education’s longest-serving top deputies is leaving — but he won’t be going far.
The city announced late Monday that Michael Best, the department’s chief lawyer since 2004, would return to City Hall, where he was a top deputy to Mayor Bloomberg at the beginning of the mayor’s tenure. Now, he will be counselor to the mayor, a position that is being vacated by the new pick for president of New York Law School.
Best’s replacement at the DOE, Courtenaye Jackson-Chase, has been at the department for more than half a decade. Chancellor Dennis Walcott promoted her to become Best’s second in command last May during a slew of leadership appointments a month into his tenure.
According to the city’s press release, Best and Jackson-Chase worked together on efforts to close the “rubber room” for teachers who were removed from the classroom after being accused of misconduct and to streamline disciplinary hearings for department employees.
State officials have cited the city’s teacher discipline timeline as a model as they work to shorten hearings in other districts. But news reports in recent weeks have suggested that the process has not been perfected and that the city has assigned several teachers to desk duty after courts ruled that the teachers could not be fired even though they were found guilty of misconduct. (more…)
April 10, 2012
News from New York:
- Lawmakers are still discussing privacy for teacher ratings but are hung up on the specifics. (Post, Times)
- Mayor Bloomberg says he thinks the ratings should be open to the whole public, not just parents. (WSJ)
- StudentsFirstNY and Democrats for Education Reform are teaming up as an advocacy supergroup. (Post)
- Michael Winerip: Efforts are underway to curb EMS calls by city schools with unruly students. (Times)
- The city has kept six teachers on desk duty for years because it isn’t allowed to fire them. (Daily News)
- One of 16 teachers the city wants to fire says he made a comment that was misunderstood. (Daily News)
- Another of the teachers presented a picture of Joel Klein with kids on his lap as a defense. (Times)
- A court ruled the city must rehire a dean it tried to fire for assaulting two middle school students. (Post)
- Advocates say they are worried that turnaround will cause high school overcrowding. (Daily News)
- Whether the schools removed from the turnaround roster will get extra help is unclear. (GothamSchools)
- Fewer students were suspended in the last six months than during a similar period in 2010. (Post)
- The state’s casinos and racetracks generated 28 percent more for schools last year. (Post, Crain’s NY)
- Kindergarten wait lists hold 2,600 children at 125 schools this year. (GothamSchools, Post, SchoolBook)
- The Daily News says Chancellor Walcott has an uncertain legacy but a strong start after one year.
- Rural Texas school districts are so strapped that they are cutting essential services like busing. (Times)
- Several Chicago parent groups say the city juked evidence for its extended day initiative. (Sun-Times)
- D.C.’s four-year high school graduation rate rose to 59 percent last year. (Washington Post)
- N.J. Gov. Chris Christie outlined his arguments for tenure reform and charter schools. (Star-Ledger)
- One of three finalists to head schools in Charlotte, N.C., could lose a job in Memphis soon. (Observer)