NYC Democratic voters want to see more charter schools, Post poll reveals
A rising ‘anti-racist’ menace and other commentary
Here’s how much NYC public schools’ daily enrollment has plunged according to DOE records
Success Academy parents finally get de Blasio to give kids space they need
It’s not just crime and public safety: Democratic lawmakers, and much of the mayoral pack, are badly out of touch with the New Yorkers they claim to care about on education, too.
The Post’s poll (conducted by McLaughlin & Associates) found that more than 60 percent of city Democrats support school choice and lifting the cap that prevents new charter schools from opening. And an astonishing 72 percent of those with household income under $60,000 want the cap lifted, as do a majority of union households.
Even a majority of voters (54.5 percent) who support far-left candidate Dianne Morales approve expanding school choice.
More than 60 percent of black, Hispanic and Asian Democratic voters want more charter schools, plus 55 percent of white.
Grassroots city Democrats are fed up with a public-school system that does so badly for poor and minority kids, and agree that parents should have more choices. Yet Mayor Bill de Blasio has spent his eight years in office trying to squelch any and all charter-school growth, while many lawmakers the city sends to Albany vote to preserve the cap.
Democratic voters also disapprove of de Blasio’s chief idea for improving options for black and Hispanic kids — namely, getting rid of standards in middle- and high-school admissions. In the Post poll, the mayor’s move to kill academic screening in city middle schools was favored by just 39.1 percent of Democrats, while 48.9 disapproved.
That last issue, including the drive to kill admissions standards at the city’s top high schools, has parents, particularly in Asian communities, electing pro-standards members to the Community Education Councils.
Meanwhile, last week, The Post reported on a rebellion by middle-class black parents in Queens District 29 against the city Department of Education’s routine acceptance of rotten public schools.
Democratic state Sen. Leroy Comrie (whose own children attended public schools) summarized his constituents’ frustration: “If chronic underperformance doesn’t scare away successful students, then the pervasiveness of violence and bullying does. Enrollment is dipping and the DOE continues to operate as if the problem will solve itself.”
Many District 29 families have moved away or pulled their kids from the DOE system and opted for Catholic, private or public-charter schools. Citywide, as the DOE failed so badly during the pandemic, charter enrollment boomed by nearly 10,000 this last year — even as the cap prevents new schools from opening — to above 138,000.
Meanwhile, enrollment in DOE schools has dropped below 890,000, though the DOE’s budget continues to soar.
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins need to stop appeasing the special interests and listen to grassroots Democrats: Lift the charter cap, and allow more schools to open that parents actually want.
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