Thanks to state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli for flagging the disaster that “remote education” wrought for New York fourth-graders, costing them the equivalent of a year of learning.
The drops in New York from 2019 to 2022 on the “gold standard” National Assessment of Educational Progress were twice the national drop, DiNapoli points out: 10% in math (vs. 5% nationwide) and 6% in reading (vs. 3%).
Worse, all young kids surely suffered similar damage. Most “remote classes” simply couldn’t work for little’uns.
Nationwide, the NAEP recorded the largest drop in reading scores in 30 years, while math scores fell for the first time in 50 years
And it’s plainly the result of closed schools and the failure of “remote learning.” That New York’s schools stayed closed longer than most of America’s also explains the Empire State’s deeper losses.
And without doubt, teacher-union power was huge in keeping schools closed. American Federation of Teachers chief Randi Weingarten even got the Biden administration to support prolonged closures, though the best science showed they did nothing to fight the virus. And New York’s politically potent teachers unions got their trained politicians to keep local shutdowns extended for most of two years.
The unions’ power has long kept Empire State educational results mediocre even though the state spends more than twice the national per-pupil average on public education. Then they greeted the pandemic by putting the kids’ needs last again. But Weingarten and local union bosses like Mike Mulgrew won’t pay any price, only the children.