New York Attacks Success

8/23/17
By The Editorial Board,
from The Wall Street Journal,
8/22/17:

Now the unions want to run Dan Loeb off the charter network’s board.

If New York City’s 46 Success Academy charter schools were their own public school district, they would be New York state’s seventh largest—and its highest achieving. That’s based on the math and English scores on state proficiency tests released Tuesday, which showed Success Academy students far outperforming most of their peers. But instead of celebrating student achievement, the chair of the committee that oversees new charter school approvals by the State University of New York, Joseph Belluck, said it would be “very difficult” to approve new Success Academy schools as long as Daniel Loeb remains on its board. Mr. Loeb, who runs the Third Point hedge fund, has drawn fire for an ill-advised Facebook post. He wrote that Andrea Stewart-Cousins, an African-American Democrat who serves as the Senate minority leader in Albany, had done “more damage to people of color than anyone who has ever donned a hood” because of her support for the teachers unions. Mr. Loeb’s post was foolish, and he has apologized. But what does it say about Mr. Belluck and New York’s education authorities that he would be willing to deprive black children of good new schools because of a stray comment he didn’t like? Let’s add some perspective. Eighty-six percent of the 15,500 students who attend Success Academies are children of color. And they are learning: 95% of Success Academy students tested proficient in math, with 84% proficient in English. Compare this to the performance in traditional public schools in New York City. For the city’s students of color, only 24% are proficient in math and only 29% in English. About a third of the city’s black students score at the lowest end—Level 1—on English and 47% in math. This means they can’t even master basic arithmetic or reading. This is the real racial scandal in New York City today

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