On Friday, a group called Parent Leaders for Accelerated Curriculum Education gathered 100 parents and students for a rally against the current high school admission policies. While the new policies have helped increase diversity at some of the city’s top high schools, families of top students who did not make it into their top choice schools are not happy about the changes.
Aside from the city’s specialized high schools that rely on a standardized test for admissions, there are also 160 screened high schools in NYC that have their own criteria. But when the pandemic hit, the administration of former Mayor Bill de Blasio took the opportunity to address the inequities by changing up the admissions criteria. With state exam scores and attendance records taken out of the formula, and students with 80 averages now being grouped in with those in the 90s, the pool of students offered seats into some of the most sought after schools for the upcoming school year increased.
The good news is that more Black and Hispanic students were offered seats into schools that have long been predominantly white and Asian. But unfortunately, many students who would have typically had a seat at these schools in the bag, some were not offered a seat at any of their top choices.
We will see what happens for the 2023 high school application process, but I have a feeling we will be seeing changes to the admissions process for some time to come.