A report released by the Civil Rights Project in June found that New York continues to be the most-segregated state for Black students in the country.
The Empire State is also the second-most segregated state for Latino students, trailing only California, according to the report.
To address these disparities, Queens-based Assembly member Jessica González-Rojas has introduced legislation (A8340) to create a diversity scale for school districts across the state.
“The legislation would allow the (state education) department to score the level of segregation in schools based on racial and socio-economic factors, allow them to compare that segregation to surrounding counties and schools,” Gonzalez-Rojas explained.
A school district’s score would depend on a variety of factors, including, but not limited to, access to resources like computers, guidance counselors, arts and music classes, field trips, gifted and talented programs and teachers with at least three years of classroom experience.
The results of these comparisons would appear in the annual school report card.
It should be noted that the bill stops at transparency; there is nothing in the bill language that calls for action.
“We want to make sure that the school community, the parents and students, as well as the administrators, educators, principles, that all of the stakeholders have the information that they need,” the Assembly member stated. “That it’s transparent, that it’s clear, that they can compare the data with other schools in the community and also compare it to the county as well.”
There is no Senate sponsor yet for the bill.
The New York State Department of Education did not provide a request for comment by publication time.