Posts from Kim Gittleson
April 8, 2011
City school officials said today that they would need roughly $300 million to avoid laying off thousands of teachers next year.
Today’s twice-delayed City Council hearing on the DOE’s preliminary expense budget for 2012 focused on how to avoid teacher layoffs and the current “last in, first out” rules that require the city to lay off teachers based on seniority.
Testifying before the City Council for the first time in his new role as chancellor-designate, Dennis Walcott fielded questions about how the city can avoid mass layoffs. And, although he’s still being referred to by some DOE officials as Deputy Mayor, Walcott was treated just like his predecessors by the Committee: with skepticism.
Council members were quick to offer their congratulations and support to Walcott, but then became less welcoming when the subjects of teacher layoffs and ending “last in, first out” rules were raised.
Many council members questioned whether or not Mayor Bloomberg had requested enough funds from Albany, with several suggesting that perhaps the $600 million Bloomberg requested ($200 million of which was set to go to schools), was deliberately low, perhaps as a strategy to continue pushing for changes to “last in, first out” rules. (more…)
October 1, 2010
Yesterday, the city released its annual Progress Reports. Mirroring the trend with test scores, charter school progress reports suffered more than their public school counterparts, receiving a higher proportion of C and D grades and an overall lower average Progress Report score. A full breakdown of charter school performance compared to last year’s Progress Reports (more…)
August 3, 2010
As discussed here and here, the state released the results of the 2009-2010 Grade 3-8 Math and English language arts test results last week. The focus has been on the new, higher bar for passing the tests and the resulting large drop in the percentage of students judged as proficient. Charter schools, like traditional public (more…)
July 27, 2010
The head of the charter school office at the Department of Education, Michael Duffy, recently announced his decision to leave the government to work for Victory Schools, Inc. Victory Schools is a for-profit Educational Management Organization (EMO) that runs seven of the nine for-profit charter schools that are currently open in New York City. Duffy’s (more…)
July 20, 2010
In a recent article in the journal Education Next, Mike Antonucci reviewed the finances of the two largest teachers unions, the National Education Association (NEA) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT). He found teachers unions in states like Oregon, Colorado, and Montana spent several hundreds of dollars per teacher for political campaign spending on (more…)
July 8, 2010
On Tuesday, the Daily News published a report on the rising rate of student suspensions in New York City’s schools. Since charter schools in New York often have discipline policies that differ from their traditional public school counterparts, I was curious to compare suspension rates in charters to those in traditional public schools. Looking at (more…)
June 30, 2010
A recent national study on Charter Management Organizations, or CMOs, by non-partisan Mathematica Policy Research, sheds some light on the role that these organizations play in the national educational landscape.
According to my own measures, CMOs ran 37 of the 77 charter schools in New York City during the 2008-2009 school year — and they have (more…)
June 22, 2010
As summer gets underway, I’ve decide to tackle some big projects — one of which is to look at the effects that school closures have had on remaining schools in the surrounding area. To get started, I’ve created a map that plots all 111 schools that Chancellor Joel Klein has closed since 2002, including the (more…)
June 9, 2010
I was very interested to read the UFT’s latest report on charter school attrition in middle schools, as I’ve had trouble finding reliable statistics to track charter school students from year to year. The UFT report claims that state test data provides a fairly accurate method to track charter school attrition-that is, the number of (more…)
May 28, 2010
Steven Brill’s latest article chronicling the politics of the Race to the Top competition has caused a torrent of commentary. One contentious aspect of the piece is Brill’s comparison of two schools that share the same building: Harlem Success Academy and P.S. 149. After Valerie Strauss picked up the statistics posted on the New York (more…)