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Walcott: "I've never been more hopeful" about middle schools

Revisiting the topic of his first policy speech, delivered in September, Chancellor Dennis Walcott today said efforts to reform the city’s middle schools are well underway.

In a speech this morning, Walcott outlined efforts that the Department of Education has already made, such as opening new schools and recruiting 150 new teachers to get extra training before starting in middle school classrooms this fall.

He also announced additional new initiatives, including a summer program to give extra help to middle school students who score just below proficient on state tests and a training program for prospective middle school leaders that will be run in part by Teach For America.

We’ll have more about Walcott’s speech and the initiatives he discussed later today. For now, here’s the complete speech as prepared for delivery at New York University this morning. The university is hosting an all-day symposium about research about what works in middle schools organized by the Research Alliance, the independent body of academics given access to city schools data.

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