On behalf of our community, the PTA executive board of the Talented and Gifted School for Young Scholars would like to share the following statement regarding the School Diversity Advisory Group’s recommendations to phase out elementary G&T schools.
The Talented and Gifted School (“TAG”) for Young Scholars (M012) is the most diverse of the five citywide Gifted and Talented Schools. TAG Young Scholars is located in the vibrant neighborhood of East Harlem (El Barrio) and serves grades K through 8. TAG Young Scholars has consistently ranked top two in all of New York State. The school, which has long attracted Black and Latinx children, was founded as a specialized program in 1989 and became a citywide Gifted and Talented school in 2005 under the leadership of its current principal Ms. Janette Cesar. TAG Young Scholars is one of the few schools that opted into a pilot initiative to increase diversity within their schools by giving priority, for 40% of its kindergarten seats, to applicants eligible for Free or Reduced Price Lunch (based on family income).
TAG Young Scholars is a wonderful example of what New York City schools are capable of. It should remain intact as a Gifted and Talented program and not be phased out. We welcome Chancellor Carranza and Mayor De Blasio to learn from our successful model, as well as work with us to help maintain our high-achieving and diverse school.