Funny thing is that the CAP report makes the case that Bloomberg's reign in NYC has been good for the city's schools.
Mayoral control in New York City appears to have had significant positive effects on both fourth- and eighth-grade student achievement. African American and Latino students benefited academically from mayoral control in New York City. The improvement rate ranged from between 1 percent to 3 percent annually. A 1 percent annual increase in student proficiency rates among New York City’s fourth graders, for example, would increase achievement for nearly 2,000 students.StudentsFirst and Michelle Rhee, naturally, agree:
In my opinion, New York should keep its school district just like it is, with the mayor in control. NYC schools have seen significant student gains since Mayor Bloomberg took control of the schools in 2002, and while the district still has a long way to go, the current governance model seems to be working for New York.Perhaps before Rhee and SF and CAP line up to shower praise on Bloomberg and former NYC Schools Chancellor Joel Klein, they ought to take a few minutes and read my (still unfinished) series on Klein's actual legacy. Here's what they'll find:
- NYC's gains in national test scores, when broken down by subgroup, were mediocre at best (this chart via the great Leonie Haimson):
(CAP appears to hide this mediocre performance by averaging out the other cities compared to NYC, rather than looking at each city individually; they're also looking at proficiency rates and not actual test scores. For a report of this size and stature, I find this to be awfully weak tea...)
- Child poverty rates stayed relatively stable in NYC compared to the rest of the state:
- There were demographic changes in NYC that undoubtedly account for many of the changes in test scores. Some examples:
But that would make my point, wouldn't it?
I can't speak to the rest of CAP's report right now. But the notion that NYC made big progress under the autocratic rule of Bloomberg and Klein is not borne out by the facts.
You're really killing my buzz, Jazzman...