Dog Is To Cat As ____ Is To Kitten

Written by Jill Colvin on . Posted in Education, Posts

SAT scores for New York City’s class of 2007 were the lowest they’ve been since 2003, the Department of Education announced this morning. The city’s public high school seniors scored an average of 903 out of a possible 1600 on the test—an eight-point drop from last year and the biggest decline in recent years. Students’ [&hellip
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Did The DOE Try To Rig A Poll For Klein?

Written by John DeSio on . Posted in Education, Posts

One way to make sure your boss triumphs in an online poll is to alert the employees that they should go vote for the boss.

A reader has forwarded to me an email from City Department of Education (DOE) spokesperson Julia Levy, sent on Saturday, August 18, alerting senior DOE officials across the City about two online polls seeking to grade Chancellor Joel Klein on his performance over the first five years of his tenure. The email reads as a not-so-subtle suggestion that recipients should go vote themselves and encourage others to do the same.

The first poll was NY1's "snap poll" from Friday, August 17, a poll that asked voters to give Klein a letter grade rating on his performance. Internet voting in that poll is now closed (you can also vote through your television when the poll is first announced), but Klein eventually pulled out a victory, receiving an A-B grade from 40% of all respondents.  The results of that poll are here.

The second poll is on the United Federation of Teachers blog, EdWize, and that poll is still open. Right now, Klein is tied with 36% of respondents giving him both the highest and the lowest grade possible. That poll can be found here.

In her email, Levy urges recipients members to pass the polls along to others, though she never implicitly tells anyone to go give Klein a high rating in either poll.

While there's nothing scientific about either poll and their results don't really matter all that much, it is interesting that the DOE would put so much effort into influencing their outcomes.

DOE spokesman Andy Jacob responds by noting that both polls are public, and that he was not sure that the email would qualify as the department going out of its way to do anything. He also noted that the UFT poll, as of right now, has seen less than 70 voters. The NY1 website does not publish voting tallies for its online polls.

The full text of the email is after the jump[ read more... ]

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City’s Schools Dangerous, Sober

Written by Jill Colvin on . Posted in Education, Posts

Twenty-seven elementary, middle and high schools in New York State have been identified as “persistently dangerous”—up from 18 last year—and 25 of those 27 are located right here in NYC, according to a list released earlier today by the New York State Education Commissioner. “Persistently dangerous” schools are schools that report at least 60 serious incidents at [&hellip
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Queens Libraries Are King

Written by Matt Elzweig on . Posted in Education, Posts

The Queens library system is the best—in the country. Yesterday the Public Library Association (PLA) released a report that ranked Queens #1. Brooklyn ranked fifth and New York (which services Manhattan), came in seventh. The Bronx and Staten Island public libraries are not PLA members. The PLA is a division of the American Library Association [&hellip
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Local Colleges Bring The Heat

Written by John DeSio on . Posted in Education, Posts

Kaplan and Newsweek have teamed up to reveal America's 25 hottest institutions of higher learning, and New York gets some significant love on the list.

Fordham University is the nation's hottest Catholic school, Cooper Union the nation's hottest school that requires no tuition and Queens College is tops in heat for first-generation college students.

The full list is here[ read more... ]

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‘Intifada’ Principal Resigns

Written by John DeSio on . Posted in Education, Posts

Dhabah "Debbie" Almontaser, principal of the soon-to-be-opened Khalil Gibran International Academy in Brooklyn, has resigned. Almontaser was hanging on to her job despite critics’ assertions that the Arabic school would be a "jihadi academy," insisting that the school would not be a hotbed of terrorist sympathizers. Then, a few days ago, Almontaser defended a T-shirt, [&hellip
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Soho School Principal: I Don’t Practice Santeria

Written by Matt Elzweig on . Posted in Education, Posts

A Soho principal paid a Santeria priestess to ward off “negative energy” at the public school. And investigators say she used school funds for part of the tab. Maritza Tamayo, the principal, claims it’s all a misunderstanding and that what appeared to be a voodoo doll was just a design project leftover from her predecessor. [&hellip
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