Parents have noticed the utter failure of the city Department of Education and are pulling their kids out at a record clip.
Preliminary DOE figures show the nation’s largest school district losing 43,000 kids this year — or 4 percent of enrollment.
Of course, enrollment’s been dropping for years: More than 10 percent of city public students now attend independent charter schools, which don’t have to answer to the DOE bureaucracy or, in most cases, the United Federation of Teachers.
But charters aren’t a great refuge right now, since the state cap on their growth leaves few open slots. Plus, they’re at the mercy of DOE rules on the use of most of their buildings, which has forced most to go all-virtual. That’s why Catholic schools, by all accounts, are seeing booming enrollment.
Naturally enough, the flight is fastest for younger kids: City kindergartens shrank by 9 percent this year, while elementary enrollment sank 6 percent. (Pre-K fell 13 percent.)
And many still “enrolled” aren’t actually attending, per a recent report on online truancy; 134 schools had no contact with at least a quarter of their online learners, while another 69 schools just straight up had no data on remote attendance.
When the schools can’t even keep track of their students, no wonder the students make tracks.
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