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Commentary By Max Eden

Making It Impossible to Measure School Safety

Education, Education Pre K-12, Pre K-12

Last week, the Manhattan Institute released my report, “School Discipline Reform and Disorder,” showing that school climate has deteriorated under Mayor de Blasio’s reform initiative.

According to the NYC School Survey, teachers say schools have become less orderly and students say their schools have become less respectful and that they see more fighting, drug use and gang activity.

“The NYC School Survey provided the most reliable window into school conditions. But now it’s no longer useful. And perhaps that’s exactly the way de Blasio wanted it.”

Almost as remarkable: Those five questions were the only ones available for analysis after de Blasio dropped 17 other school-order questions.

In a recent editorial, The Post called this a “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” approach to school safety. After all, if you’re afraid you won’t like the answers, you change the questions.

But this year, new changes were made to the survey that make comparison impossible. Because this time, they didn’t truly change the questions.

They changed the answers.

In the first round of changes, students would no longer be asked whether their peers respect students who get good grades. Instead, they’d be asked whether they see people of many races, backgrounds or ethnicities represented in their curriculum.

Students would no longer be asked whether their peers treat adults with respect. Instead, they’d be asked....

Read the entire piece here at the New York Post


Max Eden is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. Follow him on Twitter here. 

This piece originally appeared in New York Post