News and views

  • School registration centers for new students open Sept. 1–18

    Written by Lydie Raschka
    Students who are new to New York City public schools, or who are re-entering city schools after a time away, can enroll in school at temporary registration centers set up across the city beginning Sept. 1. The centers are open Monday–Friday, 8 am–3 pm through Sept. 18, with the exception of Sept. 7, Labor Day, and Sept. 14-15 for Rosh Hashanah. Family Welcome Centers will be closed until Sept. 21. All high school students as…
  • Harlem parents blast District 5 superintendent

    Written by Clara Hemphill
    For years, central Harlem's public schools have been among the worst in the city—and parents have felt powerless to do anything about it. Now, activist parents in District 5 are organizing to demand change. Community Education Council meetings in District 5—once sleepy, sparsely attended events—have become a forum for parents' anger over the state of their schools. "Parents realize that they have a voice," said Rashidah White, a District 5 parent and former president of CEC…
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  • 2015 test scores released; parents can find them online

    Written by Pamela Wheaton
    New York City students performed slightly better on state standardized tests in 2015 than they did in 2014, but about two-thirds of test-takers in grades 3–8 still failed to meet state standards on either the ELA (English language arts) or math tests, according to figures released by the state education department today. The so-called "opt-out" movement gained momentum this year with nearly 2 percent of eligible New York City students refusing to take the tests, the…
  • Last-minute pre-k search? See best bets in Brooklyn

    Written by Lydie Raschka
    As September looms and school waitlists clear (or don't), many Brooklyn families with rising pre-kindergartners approach a time of reckoning. Maybe you’ve been holding out for a popular neighborhood program but the waitlist hasn’t budged, maybe you just moved to a new area, or maybe something about the program your child was assigned to doesn’t feel quite right. Have hope, Brooklynites: Established programs have expanded in the borough, while many religious schools, child care centers…
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  • Still looking for pre-k? Here are our picks

    Written by Lydie Raschka
    There are still pre-kindergarten seats available for the fall—not just in public schools but also in religious schools, child care centers and community organizations. Some of the most popular programs are seriously oversubscribed, and there is a shortage of seats in some neighborhoods (such as the Upper West Side and Bayside, Queens.) Still, it doesn't hurt to put your name on a waitlist at a popular program while you check out others. Families who applied…
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  • HS Hustle: What do students actually read? Not "The Great Gatsby"!

    Written by Liz Willen
    The writer F. Scott Fitzgerald made his way to our dinner table earlier this summer, during a casual chat about the most essential books to read before entering college. We had plenty of recent New York City public high school graduates ticking off their suggestions.Among them: Bronte's Jane Eyre, Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Pirsig's Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Orwell's 1984, Huxley's Brave New World, Salinger's Catcher in the Rye, Hemingway's The Sun…
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How to apply to high school

  • Getting started

    New York City is blessed and cursed by the most extensive system of school choice in the country. Everyone must apply to high school. Choose carefully. Once you enroll, it’s really hard to transfer. The yearlong application process begins at the end of 7th grade,… Read more and watch video
  • Weighing your options: close or far?

    The first thing to consider is whether you want a school close to home or far away. Tip: check out the commute before you apply. Imagine what it will be like on a dark, snowy day in February. Some students happily travel halfway across the… Read more and watch video