Spring is just days away, but tens of thousands of eighth graders still have no idea which high schools they've gotten into. Admission offers, which are usually released in early March, have been delayed. Parents and students alike want to know what’s the hold up.
New York City’s Department of Education blames a lawsuit challenging Mayor de Blasio's attempts to admit more students of color to the city’s eight elite specialized public high schools.
The mayor wants to expand the Discovery Program, which grants admission to some students who scored just below the cutoff on the citywide entrance exam.
A judge ruled late last month the city could move forward with the mayor's plan and now the Education Department is scrambling to send out the notifications for admissions to all high schools.
Three of Shirley Chin's children have gone to elite high schools and now she's waiting to hear about whether her youngest will be going to high school in Manhattan or Brooklyn. Her daughter, she says, is as anxious as one might expect.
A statement from the City’s Department of Education addressed the issue by deflecting the blame.
"It's unfortunate that the lawsuit challenging our plan to make the specialized high schools stronger and more diverse affected the timing of offer letters to 75,000 families,” the statement read.
The delay is causing a special challenge for parents and students weighing whether to attend a public or private high school.
Parents considering private schools as an option already have put down one deposit. Soon, they will have to put down a second, non-refundable deposit. Some parents write that second check only if they know their child did not get into their public high school of choice.
The city says the long awaited admission letters could be sent Monday.