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Number of qualified students for gifted programs in NYC drops

Only 26 percent of students who took this year's entrance exam for gifted and talented programs in New York City made the cut.
New York City Department of Education

The number of eligible students for the city's gifted and talented programs for grades kindergarten through third grade went down this year, the New York Post reported on Friday night.

Only 26 percent of children who took the entrance exam, or 9,993 students, qualified for the programs, compared to 33 percent, or 11,876 students, last year — a decrease of 2,000 students.

Students can only apply for gifted and talented programs if they pass an assessment. District gifted and talented programs are in district elementary schools, running from kindergarten to the school's terminal grade, according to the Department of Education's official website. Citywide programs do not give any district priority, accepting students from all five boroughs.

There was also income disparity in the results, with students living in wealthier districts making up a large percentage of students who passed the exam.

Forty-three percent of 3,668 students in Manhattan District 2, which covers Tribeca, Greenwich Village and the Upper East Side, passed the exam. And forty-six percent of 1,677 students living in District 3 on the Upper East Side also passed the exam. But only 21 students, or 11 percent of 213 students tested in District 7 in the South Bronx passed.

As part of his mayoral campaign, Mayor Bill de Blasio said that he would remove single-test criteria for admissions and gifted and talented decisions, including selective schools, and institutionalize the use of portfolio assessments in schools.

The application deadline for gifted and talented programs is April 21. The DOE will notify families during the week of May 26.