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March 6, 2018
De Blasio’s flagship school improvement effort loses its leader — to Carmen Fariña’s pet project
Aimee Horowitz, who has spearheaded the city's high-profile turnaround program, has taken a new role in the city's education department.
From Classrooms to 'War Rooms'
March 19, 2015
Calling state takeover a ‘disaster,’ de Blasio says city can handle struggling schools
De Blasio highlighted the progress at one turnaround school Thursday, and said education officials recently held a "war room" session to address others.
March 10, 2015
Facing pressure to show results, de Blasio points to changes at some Renewal schools
Boys and Girls High School and other long-struggling schools have made progress in the first few months of the turnaround program, officials said.
Updated March 17, 2016
School Renewal: A newly updated guide to the city’s turnaround program for 94 schools
The stakes are high for the city's school-turnaround program, which Chalkbeat has tracked closely. Here's what's happened so far.
June 11, 2012
Student journalists report more proof of P.E. crediting problems
Searching for an explanation behind their school's mid-year physical education scheduling shakeup, two Staten Island student journalists arrived at a conclusion familiar to Department of Education insiders: It's hard to know just how many P.E. courses students must take, and for how long. Travis Dove and Juliana Zaloom, students at CSI High School for International Studies, launched their investigation in their journalism class after CSI seniors were thrust into extra P.E. classes last semester. Today, they share their report in the GothamSchools Community section. Dove and Zaloom write: The physical education scheduling conflicts could be due to mistakes by school administration and faculty. ... But the city Department of Education can also be blamed for its unclear handling of physical education. As it does not monitor schools’ physical education programs, some have not even been aware that there are requirements at all. CSI High is not the only school to have reshuffled its physical education offerings in the middle of this year. An internal Department of Education audit released in February found that some principals had been unaware of crediting rules, particularly around P.E.
January 31, 2012
At Grady, parents probe distinction between closure, turnaround
The entrance of Brighton Beach's William E. Grady Career and Technical Education High School. Is the school being closed, or is it staying open? Parents repeated variations of that question often over the course of a two-hour-long meeting Department of Education officials held at William E. Grady Career and Technical Education High School Monday evening to detail the city's plan to overhaul the school. The answer, they were told, was more complicated than a matter of semantics. "This school is not being closed," Aimee Horowitz, the school's superintendent, told families, teachers, and the School Leadership Team in three meetings at the school over the course of the day. But she also said a new school with a different name would be opening in the building in the fall, and just half of Grady's current teachers would remain. Those are the conditions of the school improvement model known as "turnaround," she explained. Mayor Bloomberg announced earlier this month that the city would use turnaround at 33 struggling schools so that they could continue receiving federal funds even if the city and teachers union do not agree on new teacher evaluations. Since 2010, Grady had been undergoing a different federally mandated overhaul process, "transformation," which relies on changing leadership, bringing in extra support services, and experimenting with longer school days and new teacher training. The details Horowitz outlined were puzzling for several of the 40 parents and students who crowded into Grady's cafeteria to learn about the turnaround plan. "First you say in your speech that the school was going to do transformation. And then as you go on you started saying things like, this is going to be a new school. So where are we, which one should we believe?" said Ade Ajayi, whose son is a junior. "A lot of things are going to change. Teachers are going to change. We don't even know if the name is going to be the same."
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