The New York City Public School District is the largest school district in the nation, serving all five boroughs of New York City. With 1,700 different schools and serving more than 1.1 million students a year, there are more students in this system than is most states. The New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) is part of the municipal government of New York city, and is currently headed by Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott.
History of The New York City Public School District
In 1969, after a series of protest and strikes, the New York City Mayor, John Lindsay, agreed to relinquished mayoral control of the school system. Control of the school system would now be the responsibility of the Board of Education, made of seven members appointed by the five boroughs and the mayor, and 32 community school boards.
In 2002 control of the school system was returned to the mayor so that it could undergo reform. The Board of Education was renamed to the Panel for Educational Policy, run by twelve members of which seven are mayoral appointees and five by Borough Presidents. On July 1, 2009, the struggle to reach a decision whether or not to continue mayoral control of the school system between Democratic and Republican parties, forced the pre-2002 Board of Education system to be reinstated.
The current New York City Public School District employs over 75,000 teachers spread across the 1,700 schools. In 2000, the school system was under intense pressure to fill teaching positions, so it experimented with hiring uncertified teachers. The No Child Left Behind Act forced the Department of Education to try new and innovative methods for hiring teachers. Programs like the TOP Scholars Program helps to bring teachers from abroad and fill in the teacher gaps.
Demographic of The New York City Public Schools
Almost a quarter of the population of New York City is under the age of 18, and nearly 55% of them are enrolled in the public school system. About 25% of the children are under the age of five and will be entering the school system for the first time. That equates to more than half a million children each year.
Of the 1.1 million students that attend school each year, about 40% of them live in a household where a language other than English is spoken. To aid parents of non-English speaking students, The Department of Education offers translations of school documents and report cards into one of 13 different languages.