...will resume tomorrow: Believe it or not, the word "elite" is on the front page of the New York Times again this very morning.
Needless to say, the Times is discussing New York City's "elite" public schools. Do any others exist?
The New York Times adores elite schools and the one percent who attend them! The paper's hard-copy headlines have looked like this, in the month of June alone:
June 24, 2019Also featured, though only on-line, was this "Times Insider" piece by education editor Dodai Stewart:
De Blasio's Plan to Scrap Exams For Entry to Elite Schools Fails
Eliza Shapiro and Vivian Wang
page A1, 1627 words
June 18, 2019
Some Students Get Extra Time To Take Elite High School Exam
Kevin Quealy and Eliza Shapiro
page A20, 1137 words
June 6, 2019
'Kids Need a Good Start’: Readers Debate Admissions at Elite N.Y.C. Schools
page A23, 965 words
June 4, 2019
Diversity Fades at Elite Schools In City: 'What Has Happened?'
Eliza Shapiro and Rebecca Lai
page A1, 1777 words
June 3, 2019In her self-referential essay, Stewart explained what it was like, back in the day, to be one of "New York’s brainiest" as a student at the Bronx High School of Science, one of the high schools in question.
An Editor’s Yearbook Tells a Tale of Race in New York’s Elite Public Schools
"For smarty-pants kids, we loved to party," the self-confessed brainiac wrote.
New York City's "elite" public high schools are all the rage at the Times. But go ahead! Just try to find a news report about Gotham's other public high schools—the non-elite schools attended by the vast, overwhelming super-majority of New York City kids.
While you're at it, try to find a news report about the city's non-elite elementary and middle schools. Out of those schools, which the Times ignores, these persistently unreported achievement gaps emerge:
Average scores, Grade 8 mathThose gigantic achievement gaps, which the New York Times never reports, emerge from those undiscussed public schools. The Times devotes no attention to the interests of the roughly one million kids now attending those schools, which sadly aren't "elite."
New York City Public Schools, 2017 Naep
White kids: 290.71
Black kids: 255.63
Hispanic kids: 263.56
Asian-American kids: 306.03
Most amazingly, the Times keeps suggesting, and has even directly said, that those gaps are an artifact of "test prep," full and complete insane stop. So it has gone as the New York Times uncorks its apparently endless supply of throwback performative virtue.
As usual, Eliza Shapiro is writing today about those "elite" public schools. Early on, the unquestioning but well-connected young scribe clumsily offers us this:
SHAPIRO (6/24/19): Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to scrap the entrance exam attracted national fanfare when it was announced, but it soon collided with stubborn realities.For the record, roughly one percent of Gotham public school kids end up attending Stuyvesant High. In this morning's report, Shapiro tosses off this amazingly clumsy claim, attributing it to de Blasio:
The mayor, a Democrat, has few friends in Albany, and did not make new ones in his approach to the bill, which some lawmakers dismissed as grandstanding. It touched off the same racial divisions among black, Hispanic and Asian lawmakers as it had among parents in New York City...
Mr. de Blasio and others have argued that the only way to increase the number of black and Hispanic students in the schools is to eliminate the exam. This year, only seven black students received offers to Stuyvesant High School, the most selective of the specialized schools, out of 895 seats.
"The only way to increase the number of black and Hispanic students in the schools is to eliminate the exam."
Even Joe Biden has never said that! If he did, you can be sure that the subsequent grandstanding would be endless, with Donald J. Trump the beneficiary of the endless performative virtue.
(In our view, stock on the gentleman's re-election has been going up this past week.)
Last week, a social engagement interrupted our reports on the way the New York Times has been reporting the need to "desegregate" these "elite" high schools. As the Times keeps beating this drum, it ignores all other public schools and the needs of the kids who attend them.
Our reports will resume tomorrow. The Times' endless series of reports may constitute the worst journalism we've ever seen, though then again possibly not.
Tomorrow: As reported back on June 4