School Choice Score: 0%
The state permits parents limited choices among traditional public schools within their district. Parents also have some choices outside of their district, but only if space is available and districts want to participate, and receiving districts can charge parents tuition, making such options limited and impractical for most families.
Charter Schools Score: 88%
New York’s charter sector has received a lot of print as of late. But a recent lawsuit has pointed out some of the deficiencies in the Empire State’s law that despite its model actions in authorizing, the funding mechanism treats a student in Buffalo very differently than one in Brooklyn (41 percent gap in base aid has been frozen for years). New York has a strong charter school law regardless, featuring high-quality components: a variety of independent authorizers, including a model higher-education authorizer in SUNY; blanket waivers from most traditional rules and regulations; and strong accountability. The cap on the number of schools allowed is increasingly problematic once again, as NYC is close to its limit and 50,000 families remain on waiting lists in the Big Apple.
Online Learning Score: 0%
New York could improve student access to online and blended options by revisiting policies related to class-size, teacher ratios, enrollment, and funding restrictions. The state prohibits full-time online schools and allows only district-led online and blended activities. New York’s Department of Education launched a statewide virtual learning initiative to support the growth of effective online and blended instruction and harness the capacity and needs of all school districts and BOCES. Student eligibility in digital learning environments in New York is not based on prior-year enrollment in the public school system.
- Source: Digital Learning Now!
Teacher Quality Score: 82%
Teachers in New York who receive unsatisfactory evaluations for two years are eligible for dismissal if they do not improve. Seniority, not performance, is considered during layoffs. Although New York teachers can receive compensation for working in high-need schools or subjects, the state does not support enhanced compensation for work experience, and districts are not discouraged from setting salary schedules based solely on seniority and advanced degrees.