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StudentsFirstNY Statement on NYC Graduation Rate Release

"Graduating students should be proud of their hard work and public charter schools deserve special recognition for improving at a faster rate than the district. However, Mayor de Blasio should hold the self-congratulation because the achievement gap remains too large, college readiness rates are too low, and watered-down criteria may explain gains," said StudentsFirstNY Executive Director Jenny Sedlis.

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StudentsFirstNY is a grassroots education advocacy organization dedicated to improving public school options throughout New York State.

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StudentsFirstNY Statement on Departure of Chancellor Fariña

“Chancellor Carmen Farina has dedicated her career to public service, and no one can question that she has fought tirelessly for what she believes in. However, after four years of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s control of public schools, far too many low-income students remain trapped in struggling schools. We hope that the next Chancellor will push the Mayor to embrace evidence-based policies and parental choice," said StudentsFirstNY Executive Director Jenny Sedlis.

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StudentsFirstNY Statement: Mayor de Blasio's Renewal Announcement Too Little, Too Late

"Mayor de Blasio's expensive school turnaround model has failed miserably and kids have suffered. After four years, the Mayor is now shuffling students and teachers out of his failed program but he's doing nothing to create new opportunities for kids who need them. This is too little, too late. When Mayor Bloomberg closed schools, he opened new, better ones. Mayor de Blasio only learned half the lesson — he should be supporting the creation of new small schools and charters rather than doubling down on the failed and expensive renewal model. When only 21 out of 94 schools have made even modest progress in four years, Mayor de Blasio must admit the complete failure of his renewal program and pursue proven strategies," said Jenny Sedlis, Executive Director of StudentsFirstNY

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SFNY Statement: ATR Needs Expiration Date

"The City's experiment with force placing teachers has failed because it's just bad policy. Mayor de Blasio must put an expiration date on the ATR pool and help principals hire the best teachers, rather than force them to take the leftovers," said StudentsFirstNY Executive Director Jenny Sedlis.

 

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StudentsFirstNY Analyzes Buried Data on Teacher Evaluations

Leading education reform organization StudentsFirstNY issued a new report called Burying the Evidence that analyzes previously unreported findings from the 2015-2016 teacher evaluation ratings. In past years this data was widely released to the public, but this year, the State Education Department (SED) posted the ratings with little to no public engagement. 

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Brooklyn Parents Celebrate Improvements at Walt Whitman Library

Brooklyn, NY – Parents in Fort Greene, Brooklyn, gathered today to celebrate recent improvements at Walt Whitman Library. The recent improvements capped a months-long grassroots campaign in the neighborhood to push for expanded programming and greater community involvement. Nearly 2,000 Fort Greene parents shared in the effort to improve the library.

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StudentsFirstNY Statement on IBO Report Detailing Inequity in Charter School Funding

This morning, the New York City Independent Budget Office released data showing charter schools housed in private space receive 16% less funding per student than district schools.

"A kid is a kid is a kid. All public school students deserve equal funding, but today's IBO report reveals an inequity that must be addressed. It's time to stop treating charter school students inequitably," said StudentsFirstNY Executive Director Jenny Sedlis.

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SFNY Statement on Staffing Changes at Boys & Girls High School

"Parents living in Bedford-Stuyvesant have known for years about how Boys and Girls High School has failed their children," said StudentsFirstNY's Executive Director Jenny Sedlis. "Parents have worked with StudentsFirstNY to organize, rally and demand real results. In October 2014, parents called on the Department of Education to release turnaround plans. Since then, those parents have seen a steep drop in enrollment, heard rumors of a merger, but have not experienced much concrete change."

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National Report Shows New York Academic Standards Most Consistently Rigorous in the Nation

report released today by the National Center for Education Statistics certifies that New York is the only state in the nation to set a consistently rigorous bar on 4th and 8th grade reading and math tests. Every other state set standards that were consistently below the "proficient" range set by the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). 
"New York is the pace-setting state when it comes to setting a rigorous bar for student achievement," said Jenny Sedlis, Executive Director of StudentsFirstNY. "Maintaining these high expectations is critical to ensuring children from all backgrounds can succeed. We are confident that the State Education Department will maintain New York's record high bar as it moves to a new testing company."

 

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StudentsFirstNY Analysis Finds New York City School Progress Stalls Since Mayor de Blasio Took Control

A new analysis released by leading education reform organization StudentsFirstNY finds that Mayor Bill de Blasio has done little to improve New York City public schools since he took control in January 2014. StudentsFirstNY intends to track and assess the Mayor’s proposals and hold him accountable to the parents and students of New York City.

Last year, the Mayor agreed to a new contract with the United Federation of Teachers — a sweetheart deal for the union that has repeatedly and negatively influenced education policy thereafter. Mayor de Blasio has offered a number of proposals with great fanfare, but so far his policies have failed to deliver real results.

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