Streams

No Admittance

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Pamela Wheaton, director of Inside Schools, talks about the 7,500 NYC students who did not get into any of the high schools they picked--and what their options are.

Guests:

Pamela Wheaton
News, weather, Radiolab, Brian Lehrer and more.
Get the best of WNYC in your inbox, every morning.

Comments [15]

Ellen from Brooklyn

It's not as though parents and kids have a choice about whether to engage in this terrible game in which the rules are stacked against them and sometimes hidden. Even if they just want to go to their local high school, they have to go through the process, and in most cases there is no guarantee that they will be accepted there.

One more time, in the name of making a system more equitable for everyone, Bloom/Klein has made it worse for everyone.

Apr. 01 2009 12:05 PM
Mary from Manhattan

Class Size has been the biggest issue ignored by the DOE. The Mayor and Chancellor both feel that is not a priority. I heard the Chancellor state at a meeting that "a good teacher can teach a large group" - he really believes that the crux of the matter is quality of teachers. Even a great teacher cannot do the project-based learning the DOE says it aspire to in a room of 24 kindergarteners or 30 older kids in a room designed for 23.

Build more schools! Create more seats and smaller class sizes!!

Apr. 01 2009 11:28 AM
Tracy

On this blog you can see that the number of unmatched kids has decreased every year.

http://www.quickanded.com/2009/03/unmatched.html

Apr. 01 2009 11:27 AM
hjs from 11211

re different
hint: every student should have a default high school assigned to them

Apr. 01 2009 11:26 AM
Peter from Sunset Park

Perhaps children of city employees should get the last choice of schools. Things would change real quick.

Apr. 01 2009 11:26 AM
Jackie from Brooklyn

The whole process is awful. My 8th grader has really been put through hell. She has been stressed and upset most of the school year. It's the same with most of her friends.

The problem is that there are many NYC schools with very low graduation rates and competition to get into the "selective" schools is fierce. If your kid is just "above average" but not brilliant the choices are very limited.

Apr. 01 2009 11:24 AM
Peter from Sunset Park

yes, the system should be different, anyone hired by the mayor should be required to send their children to public school.

Apr. 01 2009 11:24 AM
C from Brooklyn

As a person who grew up in the Chicago public school system in 90's, I wonder what NY parents think of Arne Duncan and what they think he may or may not do for the state of the national public school system?

Apr. 01 2009 11:24 AM
Peter from Sunset Park

Perhaps it is worth mentioning that many people in the Bloomberg administration send their children to private schools. I would hope that if I were mayor I would only hire people who would send their children to public school.

Apr. 01 2009 11:23 AM
hjs from 11211

maybe they should just get jobs.

stop leaching off of tax payers!

Apr. 01 2009 11:14 AM
barryinHellsKitchen from NY

You may not find out it she is accepted until July.
I can make for a long stressful summer.
Just ask around the playground, and parent of a 5 year old can tell you about kindergarden admission stress!

Apr. 01 2009 11:13 AM
Betty Anne from Ridgewood

This is really upsetting to hear. My parents didn't have a clue when it came to the application process for college. I had to rely on my public school to help me.

How are "non-affluent" parents or parents that may not understand this process supposed to figure it out?

Apr. 01 2009 11:13 AM
stuart from upper west side

regarding # 2 Peter from Sunset Park -

Let's discuss last week's NY Times article about the overabundance of kindergarten applications for local public schools in Manhattan ("Children Face Rejection by Neighborhood Schools in Manhattan" 3/23/09). The article focused on an Upper East Side family whose twin daughters were put on a waiting list for a school and block and a half from their home.

We only applied to our neighborhood school (our four and a half yr old daughter is not gifted and talented material, although she is gifted and talented in many ways). First we were told that the registration process was being put on hold until the school received direction from the Board of Ed, then we discovered that the school is (slowly) notifying parents. We're in limbo, we're still waiting to hear from the school, and there's a 2 week holiday recess next week.

And the mayor is asking us to allow for his continued leadership of the Board of Education...

Apr. 01 2009 10:04 AM
Peter from Sunset Park

My elementary school has seen at least a 25% decrease in the student population over the past 5-6 years. Perhaps the high school student population is just too high right now and in a few years the placement situation won’t be so bad?

Apr. 01 2009 08:34 AM
eva

Is this an issue of not getting into a school near your home, or of not getting into a magnet or magnet-approximate school?

It's hard to imagine that earlier generations of New Yorkers, having just narrowly escaped the Nazis, or Stalin, or Mao, or maybe just a dangerously abusive stepfather in Texas, considered themselves lucky to be alive and in a city as safe as New York and in ANY type of high school.

And yet they did utterly, perfectly, brilliantly fine in life. (Okay, not all of them, but a lot.) How?

Maybe because they weren't focused on obsessively jumping through hoops for "the right high school," (which, in my neighborhood, has become at least partially about class) but were instead sufficiently focused on what the surrounding population could USE after high school.

I mean, that they were focused on reality, which the school application process resembles less and less these days.

I don't want to dismiss the real concerns of parents, but I worry that with this obsessive and class-conscious focus on "the right school" we are turning innovative young Americans into the equivalent of those who used to prep for the Chinese Civil Servant Exam - the most meritocratic system in the world of determining who could mindlessly memorize the most pointless garbage imaginable, with no thought to inquiry or investigation.

Apr. 01 2009 04:38 AM

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.