They use the language of civil rights to win over people to their reform model that makes teacher quality and expectations and poor leadership in schools the main culprits of the ills of the school system. "See, there is no need to throw away money on schools because we need to save it for bailouts and wars."
Joel Klein uses the expression "Shame of the Nation" when he talks about achievement gaps.
The DOE's modification of the G&T program was supposed to create more opportunities. Andrea Peyser in the NY Post today is in a lather.
Eduwonkette takes a statistical look at the DOE G&T program as to which districts were winners and which were losers.
The DOE did not release socioeconomic or demographic breakdowns, but one way to get at the equity question is to look at which districts won and lost under the new system.The full piece is here.
Did poor kids gain ground? The graph below, which plots the percent change in the number of students offered gifted seats in the entry grades against the percentage of students qualifying for free lunch in the district suggests that the answer is no. On average, districts with higher proportions of poor kids saw declines in gifted admissions.
In Washington Heights' District 6, 80 students are currently enrolled in kindergarten G&T classes, but only 50 have been offered seats next year. In Manhattan's more advantaged District 2, 174 students are enrolled in G&T kindergarten this year, but 371 have been offered seats for next year.
If we cut the data by the percentage of African-American students in the district, we also see that many districts with high proportions of black students lost ground.