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Beth Fertig

Beth Fertig is the contributing editor for education, covering the New York City public school system for WNYC on air and online at SchoolBook.org.  She has covered education in the city for more than 15 years. Beth is the author of Why cant u teach me 2 read? Three Students and a Mayor Put Our Schools to the Test (FSG Books) which grew out of a radio series on the low graduation rate for special education students. Follow her @bethfertig.

"If New York City’s public schools were a city, they’d be one of the ten largest cities in the United States," she says.  With 1.1 million students hailing from all over the world, and well over 100,000 employees, Beth describes the school system as a fascinating lens through which to see the city. “Every social problem and challenge shows up in the schools,” she says. “And you get to see real people of all ages dealing with these challenges, not just talking about them.”

Beth is a New York City native who discovered her love for journalism at her college newspaper at the University of Michigan. She also has a Master’s degree in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago. She is a frequent contributor to National Public Radio. She’s won many local and national awards, including the prestigious Alfred I. duPont Columbia University Award for Broadcast Journalism for her series of reports in 2001 about an effort to privatize some struggling city schools.

Beth also won an Edward R. Murrow award for an investigation of a subway fire. And she’s won numerous awards from the city's Deadline Club, the Society of Professional Journalists, and the New York Press Club -- which gave her a special award after the 2001 terrorist attacks for a profile on the friendship of two WTC survivors.

Blogs:

Beth Fertig appears in the following:

Parents' Teacher Tenure Challenge Heads Back to Court

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

WNYC
The unions claim a new state law makes it easier to get rid of ineffective teachers, but two groups of parents say it's not enough.
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Comments [2]

These East Harlem Schoolkids Are Excited About the Pope

Thursday, August 20, 2015

WNYC
When Pope Francis visits Our Lady Queen of Angels in East Harlem next month, he'll meet some curious third and fourth graders armed with questions.
Read More

Comments [1]

Special Needs Students Stuck on Stifling School Buses, Lawsuit Says

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

WNYC
Public Advocate Letitia James is suing the Department of Education for not providing air-conditioned buses for students with disabilities, as required by law.
Read More

Comments [1]

Mayor Says He Won't Tolerate Characters Harassing People in Times Square

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

WNYC
The mayor's strong words follow a drop for him in the polls and rising concern about crime and homelessness.

Comments [5]

Law Would Ban Grand Juries when Police Kill Civilians

Monday, August 17, 2015

WNYC
New proposed legislation would stop the use of grand juries in cases where a police officer is accused of killing a civilian.

Comments [2]

'Voluntreers' Map City Foliage with New Technology

Sunday, August 16, 2015

WNYC
 A new web-based system now enables volunteers to use tablets provided by the city as well as their own smart phones to help count every city tree.

Comments [2]

NYC: No Stone Unturned As Pre-K Sites Face Inspections

Thursday, August 13, 2015

WNYC
Three weeks before school starts, New York City officials say they are well underway to inspecting all of the roughly 1,800 pre-kindergarten classrooms slated to open.
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Comments [4]

New York City Students Make Modest Gains on State Tests; Opt-Outs Triple

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Students in grades three through eight performed slightly better on the 2015 English and math tests than the year before. See how your school scored.
Read More

Comments [1]

City Council Moves Quickly on Legionnaires' Bill

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

WNYC
The City Council is taking up legislation requiring building owners to register and inspect their cooling towers, in an effort to prevent Legionnaires' outbreaks.

Comments [1]

Despite Two More Deaths, City Asserts Legionnaires' Outbreak is Slowing

Monday, August 10, 2015

WNYC
Two more people died of Legionnaires' disease, bringing the total to 12. But city officials believe the Bronx outbreak is ending because no new cases have been diagnosed since August 3.

Comment

A Summer of Test Prep Means More Asians in the City's Elite Schools

Monday, August 10, 2015

WNYC
While certain Asian immigrants have created a pipeline of tutoring centers, educators say black and Latino students often don’t have the same networks in their communities.
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Comments [15]

De Blasio's Criticism of Dominican Republic Gets Him Booed at Parade

Sunday, August 09, 2015

WNYC
During their annual parade, some Dominicans said the mayor should 'mind his own business' when it comes to the Dominican Republic's policy on Haitian immigrants.

Comment

Cuomo Cites 'Good Progress' on Legionnaires' Testing

Sunday, August 09, 2015

WNYC
As inspections of cooling towers continue in the Bronx, both Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio's administration are backing reforms to test for Legionnaires' disease.

Comment

Judge Rules NYC Teacher Licensing Not Discriminatory

Friday, August 07, 2015

WNYC
A new version of a licensing test for teachers got the green light from a federal judge, who found previous versions discriminated against black and Latino applicants.
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Comment

Recent Grade-Fixing Scandals Prompt Closer Scrutiny

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

WNYC
New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña creates a task force to root out academic misconduct after the media shines a spotlight on alleged cheating cases.
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Comments [1]

More NYC Schools Tapped to Show Off Work

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

WNYC
Seven more New York City schools will open their doors to visitors in the coming year, now that the chancellor has labeled them "showcase" schools with promising practices to share.
Read More

Comment

NYC Invalidates 3rd Graders' Test Scores Amid Investigation

Monday, July 27, 2015

The principal, 49-year-old Jeanene Worrell-Breeden, killed herself soon after testing was completed at Teachers College Community School.
Read More

Comment

Report: Charters Lose Funding Advantage vs. District Schools

Thursday, July 23, 2015

WNYC
Charter schools housed in New York City buildings still have a slight financial advantage over public schools but the per-student funding edge is lost when they're in private spaces.
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Comment

Report: Too Many NYC Schools Lack College-Prep Science, Math

Thursday, July 23, 2015

WNYC
Thirty nine percent of New York City high schools do not offer standard college-prep courses in math and science, according to a new report.
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Comments [4]

Advice from a Retiring Principal: Hire the Right People

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

WNYC
When Brian Rosenbloom took over Chelsea Career and Technical Education High School, less than 50 percent of the kids graduated on time. Now, it's 85 percent.
Read More

Comments [5]