BY TRISHA SAKHUJA
A total of 78 new schools are set to open in the City at the start of the 2013-14 school year.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott made the big announcement on April 2 at the future site of Energy Tech, a new career and technical education school that will open in Astoria next fall, in partnership with Con Edison and National Grid.”
As a product of the New York City public school system, I know firsthand the importance of solid technical education,” said President of National Grid New York Ken Daly. “Our partnership with the Energy Tech High School supports National Grid’s ‘Engineering Our Future’ initiative to build a qualified and skilled workforce.”
Approximately 10,000 students will join the new schools that are located in all five boroughs.
Bloomberg touted that his administration has opened 656 new schools, which is more new schools than any other administration in the City’s history. According to the administration, graduation rates have risen 41 percent since 2005, and the rate is 20 percent higher in new schools when compared to those they replace.
“The 78 schools announced today are part of our commitment to improving public education in New York City,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Our administration has created a record number of schools and programs for our students- which have helped to lead record gains. We still have more work to do, and with our new schools and school leaders, we’ll continue to provide our children with the opportunities they deserve.”
The list of new schools includes seven career and technical education schools, and two high schools that have partnered with the City University of New York that will allow students to take college classes, simultaneously earning a high school diploma and Associate Degree. Of the 78 new schools, 30 will be located in Brooklyn, 20 in the Bronx, 15 in Queens, 11 in Manhattan and two in Staten Island. The new schools range in specific areas of interest – career and technical education schools, software engineering, health, global commerce and environmental exploration schools.
Walcott spoke to the crowd of principals, students and community members about the Department of Education’s (DOE) approach to start new, small-sized schools that specialize in specific fields.
“We no longer believe in a one-size-fits-all approach,” said Walcott. “We take a variety of different approaches. Our strategy is providing families with more and more options, from our career and technical programs to our new middle schools, and more importantly, it works.”
Walcott continued to say, from 1960 to 2002, no new vocational, career and technical schools opened during that time, but from 2002 till present day, 28 new such schools have opened.
“Those seeking a green school can attend the one in the Bronx; if you want to go to an emergency management school, you can go to the one in the west side of Manhattan, or if you want to go to a career and health school, come to my neighborhood in Cambria Heights,” Walcott said. “In all five boroughs, we will be creating new schools that will allow great options for the parents and students.”
“Attending a CTE high school has allowed me to have a hands-on experience that I never could have imagined,” said Camille Sanchez, a senior at the Academy for Careers in Television and Film.
“Our new small-sized schools are visionary that will prepare our students for college and their careers,” Walcott said. “Teachers see it; parents say it and data show it: our graduation rates are higher, the achievement gap is closing and the schools announced today will help us continue to ensure that all students – no matter their zip code- have access to high quality education in New York City.”
Reach Reporter Trisha Sakhuja at (718-357-4000, Ext. 128), or at firstname.lastname@example.org.