DOE takes first step on school integration

The Department of Education will launch a pilot program aiming at creating diversity at seven elementary schools in Manhattan and Brooklyn, after months of pressure from elected officials and education advocates to address the city's deeply segregated schools.

The seven schools will give priority to English language learners, students in the child welfare system and students who qualify for free or reduced price lunch, meaning their families live at or below the poverty line.

Chalkbeat first reported the program on Thursday evening, and the DOE officially announced the pilot on Friday.

The announcement marks a first step in Mayor Bill de Blasio's administration's effort to diversify and desegregate city schools. City Hall faced mounting pressure to announce a citywide policy on diversity after a blockbuster UCLA report released last year found that New York City's schools are the most segregated in the nation. 

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Eliza Shapiro, CapitalNewYork.com
Miguel Camargo