Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Dismal results and gender bias remains evident in specialized high school exam

The latest results from the specialized HS exams were more dismal than ever before.  Articles are here:  New York Daily News, Chalkbeat, New York Times, Staten Island Advance, Gothamist, NY1, Politico.

Only 7 black students admitted to Stuyvesant out of nearly 900 offers. This compares to 10 black students admitted into Stuyvesant last year, and 13 the year before, meaning there actually has been nearly a 50% decrease in two years.
Bronx High School of Science, made 12 offers to black students this year, down from 25 last year – a 50% decrease in one year.
Only one black student admitted to Staten Island Tech and 11 Hispanic students were admitted out of more than 300.
Overall, 506 black and Hispanic students received first-round offers …down from 527 black and Hispanic students who received offers last year.
See also the account in the Daily News about the bitter debate between the Governor and the Mayor about who is at fault.  For once, the Governor is right in pointing out that the Mayor could change the admissions unilaterally at five of the eight specialized high schools, including Staten Island Tech, without any change in state law.  The Daily News article also touches on the fact that while more girls took the exam, far fewer girls were admitted, as in past years.  See the stats from the DOE below:

Yet girls receive better scores on the state exams and better grades. 
If you're interested in my views on the specialized high school admissions process, you can read my Gotham Gazette article from last year that deals with several issues seldom reported in the mainstream media, and/or Jon Taylor's in-depth analysis showing how the SHSAT is clearly gender biased and is less predictive of success at these schools than a student's middle school grades.
Clearly this erroneous and deeply unfair admissions system must be changed.   Carl Heastie, Speaker of the NY Assembly, announced on twitter that there would be legislative hearings on the issue, likely in early May. 

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