Carranza sticks to his guns, fights for change to SHSAT

Stephon Johnson | 5/9/2019, 7:03 p.m.
New York City Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio won’t let angry parents get ...
New York City Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza Bill Moore photo

“For the city to completely ignore the Asian community with deliberate disregard, knowing what the feedback would be, is simply racist,” said Liu. “It’s like the city trying to change or even abolish minority business programs without consulting any African-Americans.”

According to the Department of Education, however, Carranza and the city will continue to push for the elimination of the single-admissions test.

“A single test doesn’t capture the full talent of students, and our proposal will expand opportunity for the highest-performing students in middle schools across the city,” said a DOE representative. “We’re going to keep fighting to advance equity now, no matter how much a few billionaires spend to preserve a broken status quo.”

The DOE representative was referring to the news of former Citigroup Chair Richard Parsons and cosmetics heir Ronald Lauder bankrolling efforts to influence Albany lawmakers to keep the SHSAT as the only form of admittance to specialized high schools. The group, known as the Education Equity Campaign, is designed to lobby state legislators, engage in public relations and advertising to influence the public in favor of the SHSAT.

On the Education Equity Campaign’s website, the group advocates for an increase in the number of specialized high schools, more gifted and talented programs, more investment in test prep and more investment in improving middle schools and asking every eighth-grader in New York City to take to SHSAT. A video on the website shows an ad featuring 1994 Brooklyn Tech Graduate Rev. Kirsten Foy speaking on behalf of the group’s proposals.

But according to Liu, the moneyed men joining the fight won’t matter because New Yorkers can do this alone.

“I don’t know where they’re coming from,” said Liu. “I have no contact with them. This is not a big money issue. I guess it’s their money and they can use it however they like, but their voice isn’t going to be louder than the voice of the parents who show up to the community forums.”