Specialized High School Concerns in Bed-Stuy

“There are stakeholders within this city who do not want our children in those schools,” said parent Mutale Nkonde during a forum on specialized high schools. “Ultimately, these are our children who we’re sending into potentially hostile environments.” (Photo by Christina Veiga via Chalkbeat)

Following the mayor’s proposal to eliminate the Specialized High School Admissions Test over the summer, Department of Education representatives have been meeting with parents across the city, often in heated forums, to address the entrance exam and integration efforts. Chalkbeat’s Christina Veiga reports that on Monday, parents in District 16, which includes much of Bedford-Stuyvesant, expressed another concern: How will the DOE offer support to Black and Hispanic students at specialized high schools?

(…) Students in the district are mostly black, and 84 percent are from low-income families. Parents called for teaching practices that reflect the diverse experiences and cultures of these students. To underscore the need for a more welcoming environment at the elite schools, one parent pointed to a social media campaign in 2016 in which students posted about discrimination they faced at one specialized high school with the hashtag “Black in Brooklyn Tech.”

“Parents also decried the education department’s efforts as small scale,” Veiga wrote. Read more on this, comments from attendees and anti-bias initiatives already in progress, at Chalkbeat.

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