FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 17, 2005
MAYOR BLOOMBERG AND CHANCELLOR KLEIN ANNOUNCE $24 MILLION IN PRIVATE SUPPORT FOR EXPANSION OF SECONDARY SCHOOL INITIATIVES
New Grants Will Improve and Expand Opportunities for High School Students Citywide
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Chancellor Joel I. Klein today announced $24 million in grants to support and expand secondary school initiatives. $18.8 million from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will support new pathways to graduation, work, and post-secondary education, new small secondary schools and the development of small learning communities within existing high schools. $5.5 million will support the creation of new academically selective secondary schools and expand opportunities for students in communities traditionally under-represented in these schools including $3 million from the Carson Family Charitable Trust, $1.5 million from Mortimer B. Zuckerman, and $1 million from the Judy and Michael Steinhardt Foundation. Together, these funds support the range of secondary school initiatives announced by the Mayor last month to ensure that New York City's students graduate and are prepared for post-secondary education and work. The Mayor and Chancellor were joined by Jim Shelton, Program Director of the Gates Foundation, and Caroline Kennedy, Vice Chair of the Fund for Public Schools, at South Brooklyn Community High School, a successful "transfer" school developed in partnership with Good Shepherd Services that is being replicated with funding from the Gates Foundation.
"Last month I presented my vision for improving and expanding high school opportunities, and the support we announce today will help make that vision a reality," said Mayor Bloomberg. "Over the last few years, we've made considerable progress in improving secondary school education, and we will be taking that progress even further by broadening secondary school choice for students, creating new pathways for struggling students and establishing more academically selective high schools for our most successful students. I want to thank the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for their continued support and dedication to improving education in New York City. I also want to thank the Carson Family Charitable Trust, Mort Zuckerman, and the Judy and Michael Steinhardt Foundation for their generous contributions."
"These grants offer an enormous boost to our ongoing secondary school reform efforts in New York City," said Chancellor Klein. "I am grateful for the continuing support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, an important partner since the inception of Children First, and for our partnerships with the Carson Family Charitable Trust, Mort Zuckerman, and the Judy and Michael Steinhardt Foundation. With these grants, we will greatly expand options for secondary school students throughout the City and particularly in under-served communities, including new selective schools for our most academically gifted students and new schools and programs to ensure that all of our students are prepared for meaningful post-secondary education and work opportunities."
More than $8.4 million in funding from the Gates Foundation will support new pathways to graduation, work, and post-secondary education programs. These programs will re-engage struggling high school students who are over-age and under-credited and help them graduate and prepare for meaningful post-secondary education and employment. This new funding will help the DOE's efforts over the next four years to create at least 15 new "transfer" schools, small, academically-rigorous high schools for students who were not succeeding in their original high school; create at least 5 new Young Adult Borough Centers (YABCs), evening programs for over-age students who have adult responsibilities or life problems that make attending traditional high school difficult; and create new GED models that directly link GED preparation to vocational preparation, community college, and career and technical programs. Many of these new schools and programs will be connected to an expanded "Learning-to-Work" program, a pioneering vocational preparation program started this year. The DOE will open at least 20 new Learning-to-Work Centers, co-located with transfer schools and YABCs.
With $3.9 million from the Gates Foundation, the DOE will also work with three educational partners - the Institute for Student Achievement, Talent Development High Schools with Career Academies, and New Visions for Public Schools - to support capacity building and planning for the development of small learning communities (SLCs) in eight large high schools. SLCs group students within a large high school to take core courses with the same teachers, thereby fostering personal contact and strong relationships between and among students, teachers, and staff.
$6.5 million from the Gates Foundation will also support the opening of 10 new small secondary schools with two experienced partners, the Institute for Student Achievement and Young Women's Leadership Foundation, as part of the DOE's ongoing new schools initiative. These new small schools provide academic rigor, personalized learning environments, and partnerships with education and community organizations for students in under-served communities and often replace traditionally failing high schools.
"We're proud to support the broad strategy developed by Mayor Bloomberg and the New York City Department of Education to reform high school education throughout the city system and raise graduation rates," said Jim Shelton. "By adding the initiatives announced today, the Department is continuing to expand its reform efforts to ensure that none of the City's young people fall through the cracks."
"These grants are powerful examples of how the private sector can provide meaningful opportunities for our City's public school students," said Caroline Kennedy. "We are grateful to our generous partners for their commitment to excellence and we hope others will join them in supporting our schools."
In total, the Gates Foundation investments announced today support the following work:
Seven New Academically Selective Secondary Schools
The Mayor and Chancellor also announced $5.5 million in lead gifts for a public-private campaign to support the creation of seven new academically selective secondary schools, including $3 million from the Carson Family Charitable Trust, $1.5 million from Mortimer B. Zuckerman, and $1 million from the Judy and Michael Steinhardt Foundation. These new selective schools will expand the overall options for academically gifted students and provide greater access to students in communities traditionally under-represented in these schools. Some of the new schools will be located in under-represented communities and provide priority admissions to talented local students. The DOE will also expand outreach and enrichment programs to prepare middle and elementary school students in traditionally under-represented communities for admission to all selective programs. The new selective schools will offer admission based either on the citywide specialized admissions test or on students' English Language Arts and math test scores, grades, class work, written applications, and/or interviews. The grants from the Carson Family Charitable Trust and the Judy and Michael Steinhardt Foundation will support school planning and development efforts and outreach and enrichment programs for traditionally under-represented students. The grant from Mortimer B. Zuckerman will support one specific new selective school that will focus on and utilize state of the art information technology as a critical component of the overall educational experience.
"Helping to educate and prepare our City's children for the future is one of the most rewarding things I can imagine," said Russell Carson, Chairman of The Carson Family Charitable Trust. "I am very proud to be part of this initiative to create new selective schools that will provide additional enrichment for many more public school students."
"I am very pleased to be part of this critical effort to expand the educational options available to New York City public school students," said Mort Zuckerman, publisher of the Daily News and Vice Chair of the Fund for Public Schools. "These schools will provide great resources to help prepare New York's youth for success."
"I am thrilled to join this effort to develop exciting and academically challenging new public schools for New York City's youth," said Michael Steinhardt, New York philanthropist and founder of Jewish Life Network. "These new schools will provide more students with rigorous programs that will inspire them to learn and achieve."
Edward Skyler / Robert Lawson (212) 788-2958
Jerry Russo (Dept., of Education)
View the photos
Watch the video in 56k or 300k