New York City's Grad Rate Debate

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

New York has just released high school graduation rate numbers -- New York City's 2012 graduation rate was 64.7 percent. NYC's Chief Academic Officer Shael Polakow-Suransky discusses the trends in the rate, and how increased standards will effect graduation numbers.



Shael Polakow-Suransky

Comments [13]

Bravo to the caller who asked about teaching kids to make a living. This is what the NYC high schools used to do before "school reform" made college the only goal of a high school. I went to Bergtram HS (which was decimated by the Bloomberg administration's ed policies) and had enough education from that school to get a job in Accounting. There used to be vocational schools (i.e. Grady HS, August Martin HS, Transit HS, Automotive HS) where HS students got hands on training to go into various commercial maintenance fields. But these programs got left behind because a bunch of suits with fancy degrees began to run our school systems.

Jun. 19 2013 10:58 AM

I used to teach at one of these schools that your guest is talking about; where students and their parents and teacher worked closely together to craft an in-depth and meaningful education targeted towards each particular student and their specific needs. Students amassed a portfolio over the course of their four (or five) years which they had to "defend" (as a graduate student would defend their dissertation) their portfolio during an exit interview to a panel that included teachers and fellow students. This was a public "alternative" inner city high school where each teacher mentored a group of kids throughout their four years and became their advocate. All that changed when the city required us to replace our assessment system with the regents exams. Now it is has become just another struggling school focused on test scores. I am all for kids being college ready but we need to give educators the tools and support to make that happen while realizing that a one size fits all approach will not work for all kids.

Jun. 19 2013 10:29 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

I TOTALLY agree with the last caller who ended with, "When are you going to teach kids to make a living?" I was a great test taker, scoring high enough for whatever, but it meant nothing in the end. At one time, factories had their own tests to see if you work there. Then in the '60s, "resumes" and "CV's" became the rage. Nobody tested you to see if you have the basic prerequisites, but only someone read your phony resume. A college degree for most has only been a barrier for entry, and a boon for petty leftist "academics" who can only get jobs as professors, because nobody needs them for anything practical.

Jun. 19 2013 10:25 AM

SHEESH! Has anything been more politicized that education statistics? This guy throws around percentages and statistics along with anecdotal "success" stories and observations. Just politicians: just more white noise to filter out the reality that they've gutted public education. Please try to dissect these statistics, who crunched the numbers, and who published them!

Jun. 19 2013 10:24 AM

Agree with Jgarbuz

Jun. 19 2013 10:21 AM
jgarbuz from Queens

I got a full Regents Scholarship back in 1964, and subsequently wasted years in college on the cheap afterwards. I think college is a waste for most people, myself included. College should only be for people above a 130 IQ. High school should be the place where kids learn to work. I think most of the curriculae are a waste of time. Bill Gates and many other successful high tech people didn't even bother much with college, until after they made their millions and went back to get honorary degrees. Higher education should be for genuine academics, and those of us of lesser intelligence can go online or buy education when we feel we need more of it. Otherwise, it's an expensive but mostly useless commodity for the vast majority.

Jun. 19 2013 10:17 AM
Paul Mondesire from Manhattan

"Nobody was talking about college readiness 3 or 4 years ago." ????!!!!!!

ARRRGH!!!! Please challenge this "gentleman's" assertion(s). This is outrageous. The fact is that they are creating "small schools" with inexperienced and unstable leadership. There is so much disinformation in his responses that there is no way to respond to them all.

Jun. 19 2013 10:17 AM
RJ from prospect hts

This man's self-promotion does not match the reality of the way kids are experiencing schools. They are miserable being taught to the test, bored; being "productive" is a wretched measure, one that quantifies the widgets they can produce or deliver--not how they can spend the rest of their lives learning and challenging.

Jun. 19 2013 10:16 AM

How about "No Politician Left Behind." We should insist that all our reps be able to pass High School common core graduation exams! (Wonder what % of our current representatives would pass if we administered the test today?)

Jun. 19 2013 10:15 AM
Josh Karan from Washington Heights

Mayor Giuliani used to decry what he termed "social promotion"

Since the Chancellor of the City University of New York has asserted that 75% of the HS graduates who attend NYC community colleges are not college ready, and need remedial classes in english and math ---

How are the increased graduation rates trumpeted by the Bloomberg administration different than social promotion; how do they reflect any increase in educational quality for NYC students?

Jun. 19 2013 10:11 AM
Paul Mondesire from Manhattan

Please ask

1) How many Black and Latino students graduated with a Regents Diploma with Advanced Designation, and

2) How many in that cohort meet the NYS Aspirational Performance Measures standards that indicate that they are prepared to compete in college without remediation?

Jun. 19 2013 10:11 AM
Robert from NYC

Why do you have a Bloomberg sycophant on this!! Let's have someone who will tell us how it is!

Jun. 19 2013 10:09 AM
David from Fairfield CT

The grad rate will probably trend down ward as new standards are introduced and students drop out in record numbers because of lack of interest and proper support from both their parents and the school system. But these guys won't be around to witness the mess they created. They'll just blame it on the guy they hand the time bomb off to.

Jun. 19 2013 09:46 AM

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