Sunday, June 12, 2016

U.S. Senator Cory Booker on Newark's Educational Transformation and "Real School Choice"

Last month Sen. Booker gave a speech at the American Federation for Children annual meeting in D.C. Here's an excerpt, or you can see the whole speech on YouTube:
Newark has gone through, in the last decade, an astonishing change, when it comes to school choice, when it comes to a massive expansion of opportunities for our children. 
Things that I talked about with people in this room, more than a decade ago, that were some of my toughest political battles, now have become a reality, with about 40 percent of our kids not just in charter schools, but we have one of the top-three highest-performing charter sectors in the United States of America. 
In fact, in my city, which is majority-African-American, the number of kids now that are going to schools that beat the state proficiency average over the last decade has gone up 300 percent for African-American children, and the number of African-American kids going to high-performing schools has gone up 200 percent. Newark was just noticed by a [Center on Reinventing Public Education] study of schools … [as] the no. 1 city in American for so-called “beat-the-odds” schools that are high-poverty and high performing. 
We have a lot to brag about in Newark, in this cauldron of educational creativity we’ve created, that has been liberating the choice of our parents. 
As the Brookings Institution said, Newark is now the no. 4 city in the country for offering parents real school choice.

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