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Great Public Schools Criteria for New York

Great Public Schools Criteria refers to the seven elements needed for closing the achievement gaps and raising achievement for all students. The seven elements are: (1) readiness to learn, (2) high expectations, (3) quality conditions, (4) qualified staff, (5) accountability, (6) parental involvement, and (7) funding.

 Read more below about the Great Public Schools Criteria in New York.

Readiness to Learn


Full-day Kindergarten:

In 1997 the Universal Prekindergarten Program (UPK) was established with the goal of making prekindergarten accessible to all four-year-olds in New York State. School districts were to give priority to economically disadvantaged children during the initial stages of implementation and then gradually increase access so that by 2002 the program would be available to all four-year-olds whose families wanted to participate. However, planned program expansion has not occurred, as in recent years UPK state funding has been level. UPK funds flow through public schools, although at least 10 percent of funds must go subcontracts with Head Start, private child care providers, or other community-based organizations. In practice, more than half of UPK funds are subcontracted to these agencies. (NIEER)

According to one evaluation, the program showed positive gains for children, reduced special education placement and grade retention, and increased parental expectations for their children's educational success. (ECS)

The NYS Council on Children and Families acts as a neutral body to coordinate the state health, education and human services systems to ensure that all children and families in New York State have the opportunity to reach their potential. While the Council neither funds nor operates programs, it engages in both interagency policy development and research. Part of this council’s work has produced the NYS Head Start Collaboration Project.

The New York State Head Start Collaboration Project facilitates the development of linkages between federally funded Head Start programs and state and local programs and initiatives that are designed to support low-income children and families. Such linkages are important for maximizing resources and developing efficient and effective service delivery systems. Through funding from the federal Head Start Bureau, the Collaboration Project in partnership with the New York State Head Start Association, other state agencies and early childhood organizations has worked to address a variety of issues. These issues fall within eight federally identified topic areas including: education, health, child care, welfare reform, family literacy, community services, services to children who are homeless, and children with disabilities.

The purpose of the New York State Head Start Collaboration Project is to facilitate the development of collaborative relationships between Head Start programs and a wide range of state and community early childhood and family support programs and initiatives.
New York State Head Start

Quality Conditions


School Safety.
State enacted an anti-bullying statute.  N.Y. EDUC. LAW § 2801-a

NEA Grant to Close Achievement Gaps


The New York State Unified Teachers plans to use its NEA Grant to help Close Achievement Gaps by strengthening regulations for the Academic Intervention Services Program. The amended regulations would require districts to include teachers selected by their locals on district planning teams and provide direct state funding for this program. They also plan to urge the amendment of state law and regulations to decrease class size, and secure funding for adolescent literacy in high-needs schools.