For the latest Village Voice Education Supplement, I explore the growing phenomenon of parents in some NYC neighborhoods carting their kids en masse to other boroughs for grade school:
Each weekday morning, the commute begins: Carfuls and trainloads of Brooklynites make their way across the river to Manhattan, fighting traffic on the Williamsburg Bridge and jam-packed L trains. The trip can take anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour; on arriving, they strip off their coats, say goodbye to their mommies and daddies, and settle in for another day of elementary school.
While the Williamsburg shuffle has gotten increased attention of late, thanks to a Crain’s article and an epic discussion thread that followed on the Brownstoner blog, parents sending kids as young as kindergarten age to schools elsewhere in the city is a time-honored tradition in the world of New York parenting. The city doesn’t officially keep track of how many kids attend public schools outside their assigned districts—with or without legal permission—but every parent, it seems, knows someone who’s done it… [read more]