Mother of all white flight to hit NY schools and De Blasio pretends he had nothing to do with it
New York is facing an educational disaster. Mayor Bill De Blasio's socialist plan to end meritocratic entry to New York's famed specialty schools - in performing arts, hard sciences, engineering, academic achievement - in the name of racial equality, is about to trigger a huge white flight. And not just white flight, Asian flight. Here's an excellent report from New York Post columnist Karol Markowitz:
In a push to improve diversity at District 15 middle schools in Brooklyn, Mayor de Blasio last week approved a plan to remove admission standards at all of them.
The announcement of the changes featured some blatant doublespeak. “The District 15 middle-school diversity plan will remove screens from all middle schools and will prioritize 52 percent of sixth-grade seats for students from low-income families, English-language learners and students in temporary housing.” Got that? They will remove screens and replace them with other screens.
The removal of standards won’t just be academic. Schools that previously focused on music or the arts will no longer be able to audition students. Students who have dedicated their lives to learning to play the cello will be in classes alongside kids who have no interest in the arts at all.
Does that sound revolting or what?
Imagine being an Asian student or a parent out in some place like Queens and working hard as heck to get into one of these good schools as the kid's ticket out of Archie Bunker land and being told the kid is not good enough, solely owing to his inability to 'contribute' to the racial balance. For him, it's back to the crappy public schools with the mold and the tumbledown bricks, the beyond-ugly exterior, the metal gun-detector gates, the nasty bouncer security guards, the political correctness agenda, the subliterate union teachers with political connections, and the $100,000-a-year union janitors who don't deign clean up a thing? Ugh. I've seen these places, they are revolting, you wouldn't want to put any sort of kid there. New Jersey, here we come. Hello, Massachusetts, hello, Maryland.
It doesn't take an idiot to know that that is what is going to happen, human incentives being what they are. If New York refuses to offer a quality education to its most motivated students, and insists on judging them solely on their color in order to virtue-signal to those who send their kids to private (and very white) schools, well, the kids will go Galt and their parents will pack up and move someplace else.
A huge shame, given the lustrous reputation these schools have had with merit-based admissions. It's all about to go downhill.
And guess who isn't around to claim responsibility for the Chavista-grade fiasco so typical of socialism? Markowitz reports that Mayor Bill De Blasio, who spent youth working for the Sandinistas and spent his honeymoon in Castro's Cuba, is making himself scarce as New Yorkers complain about the problem.
The mayor has taken great lengths to separate himself from the creation of the plan. He tweeted “District 15’s diversity plan is so powerful because it was created by the community.” But Leslie Brody in The Wall Street Journal noted that “a community survey of District 15, conducted as part of developing the proposal, found that 58 percent of 879 respondents favored letting middle schools use academic records to determine who gets in.”
And those listening sessions that De Blasio is hiding behind? Well, here is how those went:
Matt Welch, editor at large at Reason magazine and the only District 15 parent I spoke to who allowed me to use his name, told me that he attended the “big mid-August meeting at the Brooklyn library that was billed as being for parental ‘feedback’ ” yet anyone who wanted to speak against the plan was silenced and “the first mention of whether this would actually improve the schools came 45 minutes into the meeting.”
Which sounds about right. This is what leftists mean by 'participatory democracy,' and it's never pretty. But Lenin would recognize it.
Markowitz also notes that De Blasio sent his own kids to a white-dominated specialty school. Socialists, see, always have a little room for a nomenklatura activity, while shutting the less powerful and non-politically connected out.
All in all, it's an ugly picture of a socialist making a mess, then pretending it was the reactionaries' doing as the whole thing turns to mud, while carefully ensconcing themselves in the very best, away from the cameras. He doesn't even show up for the job much anymore.
I don't know what to do about New Yorkers - the French elected a socialist and at least revolted about the results of their choice. The Venezuelans revolted, too, without much success. The socialist pattern of tramping on the little guy is in New York is there once again, exacting a big bite out of New York's high achievers in the name of leveling. And they keep voting for such people. One wonders if a harsh response will be the result, or white flight and Asian flight will simply hollow the place out. One or the other is going to happen as merit is eliminatedd as a factor in educational success.