On Oct. 8, with just three months left in his term, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced plans to phase out the gifted-and-talented program in New York City public schools. But Eric Adams, de Blasio’s likely successor, has ideas about the program that appear to be more in line with ours: It should not be destroyed, Adams said on Oct. 15, but should be retooled and expanded.
The city's Panel for Education Policy refused to continue standardized testing for preschoolers for admission to the city’s gifted and talented programs, opening the door for reshaping the program and the criteria for admission and taking a crucial step toward addressing inequities in our segregated school system.
Now is not the time for the state to withhold funding that could help New York City students who have been traumatized by the life-changing effects of the pandemic. The governor’s executive budget proposes to reduce needed state school aid and then fill the gap with part of the $2.1 billion that New York State received for schools in the federal stimulus bill. Shortchanging our students now will have long-term consequences for them later.