NOTE: The title and text of this story have been corrected. CBS News also corrected the story upon which this story was originally based, but failed to note the correction.
In his last State of the City address, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg bragged about his huge taxpayer investments in education. “Now, let me ask you: is there anyone who still believes that New York City can’t get big things done? Since we’re here in Brooklyn, I’ll say it again: Fuhgeddaboudit.”
Bloomberg was right about one thing only: forgetting about it. Because not only are big things not getting done in New York City on education, even small things aren’t getting done. According to officials from City University of New York, a full 80 percent of high school graduates in New York City who are headed to CUNY colleges can’t read properly, write or do basic math when they graduate. As CBS Local reports, “They had to re-learn basic skills – reading, writing, and math – first before they could begin college courses.”
And that’s for the students who graduate and head to CUNY. New York City has the lowest graduation rate for black and Hispanic male students in the nation, with only 37 percent graduating. But teachers start off making $45,530 with benefits, and max out at over $100,000.
It’s not just Bloomberg and New York. In the city of Los Angeles, according to The Education Trust-West, just one in every 20 black kindergarteners will graduate from a four-year California college. Overall, a whopping 40 percent of high school students entering public colleges across the country require at least one remedial class in reading, writing or math.
This is the legacy of a teachers union-driven system in our major cities. And it is minorities who pay the highest price.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the book “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013).