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(Very) early education
May 17, 2019
New proposal would extend early childcare pipeline from birth to preschool for some NYC children
The New York City comptroller, with support from some state legislators, is pushing for a new payroll tax to expand affordable care for children from birth to age 3.
May 14, 2019
‘Get this right’: Comptroller Stringer adds to calls for major changes to New York City’s pre-K contracts
Pre-K and childcare providers in New York City say that changes to how they're funded could spell financial disaster.
birds and bees
December 1, 2017
Despite progress, many New York City schools still fail to provide sex ed
Slightly more middle-school students took health classes last year, which are required by city rules to include sex education, according to data released Friday by…
December 19, 2016
Success Academy audit turns up ‘irregularities,’ New York City comptroller says
The New York City comptroller on Monday released an audit that raises “serious concerns” about the operations of Success Academy.
Show me the money
June 22, 2016
Comptroller finds evidence of weak financial oversight at two charter schools
Two city charter schools risked thousands of city dollars with sloppy financial management, according to audit results released Wednesday by the city comptroller’s office.
December 2, 2014
Audit: City losing track of thousands of school computers, tablets
Thousands of computers and iPads that belong in city schools are missing or unused because of poor record-keeping, according to a new audit from Comptroller Scott Stringer’s office.
the game is the game
October 30, 2014
Success Academy charter schools among first to be audited by comptroller
Success Academy Charter Schools, the 32-schools-and-growing charter management organization, is among the schools that Scott Stringer announced that he will audit.
April 7, 2014
Comptroller: City should boost schools’ lagging arts offerings
One in five city schools does not have even a part-time art teacher, despite state laws mandating arts instruction—and the gaps are greatest in schools…
February 26, 2014
First DOE audit from Comptroller Stringer raises questions about milk contracts
Updated with response from Elmhurst Dairy. In his first audit of the city’s Department of Education, Comptroller Scott Stringer said Wednesday that the…
October 9, 2013
City again plans to skip public hearings on spending plan
The city is poised to disregard mandatory public hearings about how hundreds of millions of dollars get spent in high-need schools for the sixth straight year. The hearings, which are supposed to take place in all five boroughs, have been required by state law since city schools began receiving extra state funds known as "Contracts for Excellence" in 2007. The money came out of a landmark lawsuit settlement that awarded aid to schools with large populations of poor students. But the city has skipped the meetings since 2009, a trend that advocates say is not just a blatant violation of the law. They argue it also means the loss of a crucial accountability step to ensure the funds are spent appropriately, and a missed opportunity to include parents and community members in decision-making. "I find it just the latest example of DOE's refusal to engage parents and the public in a meaningful discussion about priorities," Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer wrote in a letter to Chancellor Dennis Walcott this week.
August 28, 2013
Spitzer talks up Albany school funding record on campaign trail
Eliot Spitzer with State Sen. Marty Dilan and supporters outside a Brooklyn school. Correction appended Eliot Spitzer is touting his education record during his time as governor in the race for New York City comptroller, pledging to use the same approach he took in Albany in order to scrutinize the city school system. In what has become a closely watched race, due mainly to Spitzer's late entrance, many aspects of Spitzer's brief tenure as governor have been sharply scrutinized. His opponent in the Democratic primary, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, has focused on a few, including legislative gridlock, a politically charged police surveillance program, and the prostitution scandal that ended with his resignation after just 15 months in office. But an area that Stringer's campaign has stayed mum on so far is Spitzer's record on education, which several funding advocates praised today. Though his time in Albany was short, they said Spitzer fought hard to convince the legislature to fulfill a school funding mandate for poorer districts to the fullest extent as part of a settlement that came out of a lengthy lawsuit called the Campaign for Fiscal Equity. "Governor Eliot Spitzer was a clear champion on CFE," said Billy Easton, executive director of the Alliance for Quality Education, which was formed to lobby and organize on behalf of the campaign.
August 20, 2013
Report incites a debate over internet speeds in city schools
No matter who you talk to — politicians, Dennis Walcott, principals or teachers — it's clear that the Department of Education has work to do before teachers and students can handle extensive online activity in their schools. Where they disagree is how close the school system is to actually being up to speed. The disagreement spilled into public today when department officials vehemently objected to the veracity of a report by Borough President Scott Stringer's office. Stringer's report, which was based on data his office received from the city last month, showed that three in four school buildings had slow internet connections. The report criticized the city for moving too slowly to upgrade technology in schools in the age of information. Schools will also need a minimum internet bandwidth — measured in how many megabytes of online information can be uploaded and downloaded per second — in order to administer online tests by 2015 as part of New York's participation in a national assessment consortium (New York has signaled it may not begin the online testing on time). But city officials said today that the department is actually much further along than what Stringer's report claimed. They said the data they sent to Stringer's office weren't accurate, a point that they said was communicated last week after seeing a draft of the report. The reality, Walcott said in a statement, is that just 250 of the city's roughly 1,250 school buildings have slow internet speeds, a number that is consistent with what education officials told reporters at a technology summit last month. The majority of the schools, they said, have the capacity to download up to 80 megabytes of information per second.
September 21, 2012
At rooftop garden party, 2013 candidates tout budding principal
From left, Christine Quinn, Kelly Shannon, Scott Stringer and Vicki Sando, founder of the Greenroon Environmental Literacy Laboratory, and state Senator Tom Duane. Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn are likely in for a year of confrontation as they prepare for their prospective mayoral bids. But on Friday morning at the opening of P.S. 41's new 7,000 square foot rooftop garden, they were happy to agree on one thing. "We agree that you'd be on any mayor's short list for chancellor," Stringer said to P.S. 41's principal Kelly Shannon during a speech in the Greenwich Village elementary school's gymnasium. The Democratic primary is still a year away, making serious contenders unlikely to make any declarative statements on education or anything else. But who a mayor considers — and eventually selects — to be his or her chancellor is one of the most telling hints for how a candidate plans to guide education policy, which is shaping up to be a defining issue in the race. "There are two major decisions the next mayor's going to make in this town. The first is, who's gonna be the police commissioner? And then who's gonna be the schools chancellor?" Stringer said.
September 5, 2012
Candidates to skip first day of school for Democratic convention
Last year, Robert Jackson (l.) and Speaker Christine Quinn, candidates for higher office im 2013, joined UFT President Michael Mulgrew on the first day of school. Visiting schools to shake hands with students and pose with parents on the first day of school is a time-honored stop on elected officials' public schedules. But few of them will be pounding the pavement on Thursday. That’s because their presence is required at a different kind of political event: the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. All of the leading contenders in next year’s mayoral race have made first-day-of-school stops in the recent past. Last year, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn appeared in Inwood with United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew to celebrate their budget victory that prevented thousands of teacher layoffs. Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer handed out "Back 2 Basics Guides" at several schools, and Public Advocate Bill de Blasio was in Fort Greene calling on parents to get more involved in their children’s education. As comptroller in 2009, Bill Thompson used the first day of school to criticize the city for increasing class sizes. This year, all four are part of the roughly 450-member New York State delegation that will help nominate President Barack Obama for a second term Thursday evening. On Tuesday, the delegates approved the party platform, presented by Newark mayor Cory Booker, which included a hefty slate of education policy positions.
August 21, 2012
Mayoral hopefuls mum, other politicians shun StudentsFirstNY
Most of the 2013 mayoral contenders are still keeping an arm's length from a union-backed campaign to tie StudentsFirstNY's agenda to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign. But that hasn't stopped a slew of other political hopefuls from throwing their support behind the effort. New Yorkers for Great Public Schools, a coalition of public unions, community-based organizations and liberal advocacy groups, has released a list of 33 elected officials and candidates who have signed on to a pledge to refuse support from StudentsFirstNY, which is seeking to advance the education polices started by the Bloomberg administration. The list includes candidates for Manhattan and Brooklyn Borough President, Public Advocate and a slew of City Council members and state legislators. Noticeably absent are frontrunners in the one race that New Yorkers for Great Public Schools and StudentsFirstNY hope to influence the most: the 2013 mayoral election. Only one prospective candidate, John Liu, has said he'd reject StudentsFirstNY's support. City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said last week she'd be fine accepting their support, as did long-shot Tom Allon. Former Comptroller Bill Thompson was non-committal in his response and one other candidates, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer has stayed mum on the subject.
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