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Rise & Shine: A parent engagement meeting without the parents

Wednesday, Sep. 23, 2015
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Most students get another mid-week break starting Wednesday, with district schools closed for Yom Kippur. They'll also be closed tomorrow for Eid al-Adha, a major Muslim holiday that's new the school calendar. But schools have been staying late into the night this week, hosting sparsely-attended meetings on school-improvement and a hearing on a contentious rezoning proposal. Stories on those and other news continue to churn below. Happy reading! 
- Geoff

Chalkbeat reports

Stories brought to you by Chalkbeat reporters

How much does homelessness affect school performance? New York City aims to find out

The city is planning to award a one-year, $100,000 contract to an outside research group to measure each school’s population of students who have disabilities, come from low-income families, or enroll mid-year, according to officials and an education department request for proposals. The group would compare each school’s share of high-needs students to the local average, and analyze how that affects its academic performance.

At public hearings on state takeover, few parents and a glimpse of challenges ahead

At the Young Leaders Elementary School in the South Bronx, the principal and city officials faced a nearly empty auditorium Monday evening as they explained that an outside group could take over the school if it fails to quickly improve. No parents or students were in the audience. About a dozen blocks north at Alfred E. Smith Career and Technical Education High School, several students and parents did attend a similar meeting designed to explain the “receivership” program, which state lawmakers created in June to prompt drastic changes at low-performing schools. However, even by the end of the meeting, they still were unclear what receivership meant for their school: One mother tearfully pleaded with the officials not to shut down her son’s school, even though that is not part of the program.

Rise & Shine

A roundup of education news and analysis

tough crowd

Not a single parent or student was in attendance at a public hearing at Young Leaders Elementary School, one of the first of more than 60 meetings taking place at struggling schools over the next two weeks that's supposed to garner feedback from the school community. Chalkbeat

in the zone

There was a better turnout at P.S. 8 in Brooklyn Heights for a public hearing over a rezoning proposal that could racially integrate two nearby Brooklyn elementary schools. New York Daily News

Anxieties are simmering for parents of the two schools over the proposal, which aims to ease overcrowding. New York Times, Wall Street Journal

out-of-school factors

Schools across the city are afflicted with more than just low test scores — at many, a large number of children are homeless. Now, the city want to find out what impact that has on school performance and it's looking to hire an outside research group for the job. Chalkbeat

rich school, poor school

While the country has shown some progress in its efforts to narrow the racial achievement gap, "today the biggest threat to the American dream is class" and a widening gap between affluent and less privileged children, writes Eduardo Porter. New York Times

Putting the 'pro' in protest

Dozens of education activists rallied at City Hall in a show of support for Mayor Bill de Blasio's community schools initiative. New York Daily News

with friends like these ...

Gov. Andrew Cuomo met with teachers union leaders Randi Weingarten, Michael Mulgrew and Karen Magee in the weeks after pushing a teacher evaluation law that is unpopular with teachers, newly-released schedules show. POLITICO New York

As they pursue separate education policy agendas, Commissioner MaryEllen Elia and Cuomo have spoken on the phone, but have yet to meet in person three months after her appointment was first announced. POLITICO New York

fun with goal posts

One goal in de Blasio's big plan for education is that two-thirds of students will be "college-ready" by 2026, but that's actually a less ambitious goal than the standard set by state education officials, the New York Post editorial board writes. New York Post

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