Posted on May 29, 2015

City Education Department Will Be Required to Report on Diversity

Ross Barkan, Observer, May 27, 2015

Under legislation that sailed through the City Council today, the Department of Education will be required to file an annual report on demographics in public schools.

The bill came in response to a 2014 report by UCLA’s Civil Rights Project that found New York’s public schools to be among the most segregated in America.

“It is shameful to have a school system that is among the most segregated in the country,” said Councilman Brad Lander, a Brooklyn Democrat and lead sponsor of the bill. “With the detailed data and strategic reporting that this bill will provide, New York City will have a meaningful framework to promote inclusion and advance diversity.”

Out of the 32 school districts in New York City, 19 had 10 percent or less white students in 2010, according to the UCLA report. Nearly three out of four charter schools (73 percent) were considered “apartheid” schools with less than 1 percent white enrollment, and 90 percent were “intensely segregated” (less than 10 percent white enrollment).

The legislation, which passed the Council unanimously, will require the DOE to submit to the City Council and post on its website an annual report on student demographics and the department’s efforts to “encourage diversity” within schools. {snip}