The New York Times reported about the elementary school P.S. 9 in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn that, even though is not in the best of locations, is really fulfilling peoples’ needs.  The PTO, parent teacher organization, is extremely successful and the co-presidents Nelly Heredia and Penelope Mahot explain that they are also extremely happy with the way the children are actually learning, as well as many other things.  Their biggest worry is the public school which is attached to P.S. 9, M.S. 571.  It is a low-performing, and on December 6, the Department of Education announced plans to phase it out.  What the parents want to do is expand P.S. 9 all the way through eighth grade with the empty space that M.S. 571 is leaving behind.  The education department has a different plan.  It has made plans to move a middle-grade charter school, Brooklyn East Collegiate, into the now empty space.

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First a deputy chancellor of the New York City Department of Education, Mr. John White, and then the New York City schools chancellor Ms. Cathleen P. Black, and now Dr. Steiner?  Is this just coincidence or have they all simply given up?  Come August, the New York state education commissioner, David M. Steiner, will be resigning from his position.  Dr. Steiner was the one of the only officials to publicly announce his doubts about Ms. Black as chancellor, but eventually he gave his approval with trust that Mayor Bloomberg knew what he was doing.  He now has to approve Mr. Dennis M. Walcott before he can succeed Ms. Black in office.

Throughout the past two years that he has been in office, he has been aiming to reinvent state tests as well as elevate the curriculum in New York State schools.  He also has been trying to make New York eligible for a federal grant called Race to the Top by attempting to make mass multiple reforms.   Dr. Tisch, the chancellor of the State Board of Regents, said in a statement that: “As commissioner, he has delivered.  In the weeks to come, the board will begin an orderly transition and continue to move forward with our reform agenda.” So at least one of his developments seems to be progressing.  He is leaving with unfinished new state tests, a new set of standards for teaching curriculum (which has yet to be announced), and a new system of teacher certification and evaluation.  He is leaving to try and take on the national education issues, but what will happen if the country’s largest school system, New York City, falls apart?  Did all of these top education officials just happen to leave at the same time, or is this the work of the media trying to get all of the bad news about the New York education system out at once to mask the true details of what is happening?

Further Reading: