With Schools Ditching Merit for Diversity, Families of High Achievers Say: We’re Out of Here

A National Battle Over Merit 

The battle in New York City is an example writ large of a high-stakes gamble playing out in cities across the country – essentially a large experiment in urban education aiming to improve the decades-old lag in performance of mostly black and Latino students. By ending screened admissions that segregate poorer performers and instead placing them in lottery schools with higher achievers, the theory goes, all students benefit.   
But the research cuts both ways on the academic impact of mixed-ability classrooms, and many New York City parents say they don’t want to roll the dice on their kids’ education. If a large number of families do exit the city’s public schools in 2023, it would mean another financial blow to a system that has already lost more than 100,000 students since the beginning of the pandemic. Yet some of these parents may decide to remain in the public system and augment their kids’ education with advanced after-school classes, a common practice. 

“When desegregation policies have been adopted in other cities, some parents who object stick it out and adapt,” says David Armor, a professor emeritus at George Mason University who has extensively researched integration policies. “But I would expect some degree of middle-class flight in New York City given how the lottery is going to change the academic composition of the middle schools.” 

Read the full article on Real Clear Investigations: https://www.realclearinvestigations.com/articles/2023/01/04/with_schools_ditching_merit_for_diversity_families_of_high_achievers_say_were_out_of_here_872909.html