Cancelling Renewal Schools

The Story

At the beginning of his first term, Mayor de Blasio announced that he would end the practice of closing failed city schools and launch a major initiative to turn them around: the Renewal Schools program, which would bring extensive financial resources and services to the troubled schools in an effort to bring them up to acceptable quality. Five years later, the mayor is throwing in the towel. The wasteful and inefficient Renewal Schools program forced children to attend subpar schools, for no good reason.

The Facts You Need to Know

  1. Money: The Renewal Schools program poured $773 million into failing schools with very few measurable gains to show for it. Read more.

  2. Bloomberg: The previous practice of closing failed schools and moving their students into better ones produced better results at less cost than the Renewal Schools approach. Read more.

  3. Similar: Defending the program for years, the city ignored the fact that comparable or better improvements occurred at neighboring non-Renewal schools. Read more.

“Had the city instead closed the schools and reallocated the students to more effective sites, what could it have done with that $773 million?”

Marcus Winters, Manhattan Institute senior fellow

Twitter Take

The Past is Present

Who Really Runs the Schools? By Lydia G. Segal (Winter 1995)

“Many community school boards are political patronage enterprises more than educational ones. The victims, as always, are New York’s children.”

And in other news...

“Johnson proposed something so obvious, that no one else has seriously suggested it: The city should run its own transit system, with voters seeing clearly who’s in charge.”