BROOKLYN MEDIA GROUP DECEMBER 1 - DECEMBER 7, 2017 17
SUCCESSFUL MIDDLE SCHOOL SHOULD
REMAIN AS IS
The New York City Department
of Education (DOE) recently made
the decision to alter Brooklyn’s
Medgar Evers College Preparatory
School’s (MECPS) admissions
process and academic program,
much to the dismay of families,
school faculty, community
members and local
The DOE took the
position that the instructional
and curriculum at
MECPS should be
realigned in an effort
to serve low-performing
with disabilities and
students of incarcerated parents.
While the DOE’s effort to service
the needs of all children should be
applauded, the decision to change
the focus of this well-established,
highly successful institution,
without meaningful input from
the community, is both misguided
For the past 16 years, MECPS
students have excelled academically
with 84 percent of middle
grade students meeting state proficiency
in English Language Arts
(ELA) and 78 percent in math, far
surpassing the majority of New
York City schools where less than
38 percent of students meet state
proficiency in ELA and math.
After years of proven success,
the DOE believes it is best to
change MECPS’ admissions policy,
removing the school from citywide
access to district-wide status,
denying New York City parents a
choice in their child’s education.
This will not only cut off the
diverse pool of applicants across
various economic, racial, ethnic
and geographic backgrounds, but
will perpetuate the unwelcome
trends of segregation that have
plagued our city for far too long.
Based on a 2014 study from the
Civil Rights Project, New York
City was found to have the most
segregated school system in the
The quality of education our
children receive is directly
correlated with their economic
mobility, making desegregation
imperative to improving the
lives of our children and their
educational experience, and for
the continued growth of our local
economies as well.
Therefore, it is incomprehensible
DOE would want to
transform a successful
such as MECPS by
limiting student body
diversity and concentrating
in a school that
already has a large
population of both.
One element of the extraordinary
achievements of MECPS is its integration
of the middle school into the
high school, which is vital in making
it a unique early college institution.
For many children who grow up
in neighborhoods with low-performing
middle schools, the pipeline to
high schools with low graduation
rates and even lower college-readiness
rates is far too common.
It is crucial then, that we demand
the DOE reverse its decision to alter
the MECPS admission policy, in an effort
to support one of the few middle
schools that is excelling in preparing
our young students for the future.
Moreover, the same standards
that are given to preparatory
schools such as Mark Twain I.S.
239 for the Gifted and Talented,
should be given to MECPS, regardless
of where their students come
from, or the economic background
of their families.
I urge the DOE to forge strong
community partnerships with
MECPS, and work with the parents,
faculty, staff and elected officials in
an effort to serve children in need,
without disassembling such a highly
successful and proven program.
MECPS nurtures and supports
the best and the brightest students,
and programs such as theirs
should be replicated, not dismantled
Assemblymember Walter Mosley
represents the 57th A.D.
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Photo by Stephanie Durso