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Pay Tribeca Prices, Get Educated in Chinatown
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"More than two dozen Tribeca parents were shocked to learn last week that their children likely won’t be going to kindergarten in the neighborhood. Parents of the 28 children on the wait list for P.S. 234 received letters telling them that their kindergartners will instead be offered seats in Chinatown’s P.S. 130, at Baxter and Hester streets, just north of Canal Street."

http://www.tribecatrib.com/news/2011/may/1017_tribeca-parents-on-wait-list-for-ps-234-angry-over-assignments-to-chinatown.html

That's great for these kids! They'll learn how to speak Chinese! Chinese is the future, man! You make it sound like it's a disgrace!

" 89 percent of the students at P.S. 130 are Asian-Americans, 5 percent are of Hispanic heritage, 3 percent are white and 2 percent are African American. Like P.S. 234, it is academically one of the highest ranked schools in the city."

"“I feel very sad and disappointed,""

"“We’re very concerned,” "

" “What will he be learning while they are all learning English?” she asked."

"Some desperate Tribeca parents have even talked of renting apartments east of Broadway to qualify their children for the Spruce Street school. "

now wait just minute! just what exactly is this article implying? these "new yorkers" love their city! they love its culture, vibrancy and all the different colored people they see out of their windows. it's why they paid 3 million dollars to live in a 2 bedroom in an old warehouse. it's why they live in new york! is someone out suggesting they only liked new york because it's expensive and has famous people, and they were really just hoping all the yucky locals would go away eventually? YOU LIE

I live in Tribeca with young kids and I think it would be awesome to send my kids to the Chinatown school. I'd love to lottery into the biligual school. The "white" parents who are concerned about what their kids will be learning while the other kids are leaning English need not fear. Their kids will be learning better mastery of the English language (which would prevent them from saying idiotic things) and how to get along with other human beings - two lessons they should learn themselves.

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they chose to raise their kids in tribeca....but they don't want them to be surrounded by too many asians.....if i just sit here long enough, i think i can wrap my little mind around this.

alanhart, good one. while the angry parents are entitled to raise their children however they want, it's funny how delusional they are. it'd be easier for them to educate their children in the manner they desire in greenwich, ct or palm beach, fl.

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It's more than just a question of academics (btw, I tried to lotto our kid into Shuang Wen, but not in the right district). School is just as much about having playdates with the other kids, and building a community of families. It's not that easy when you mix a bunch of well-heeled Tribeca-ites with min. wage earning 1st generation parents.

Jason: most parents, if given the choice, would not want to be part of that cohort.

Interestingly, Shuang Wen (the bilingual school), post-influx of non-Chinese parents and kids (these parents actively WANT their kids to be there) have had issues with the resulting socio-economic mix. Something to do with the mandatory $1k-ish afterschool program that the 2-working parent immigrant families want and that the other families don't (gross oversimplication).

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PS 130 is a great school, and some of the reactions are of the facepalm variety ("what will he be learning when they learn English?" Oh, I don't know, English, maybe?), but I can understand not wanting to cross broadway & Canal every day with little kids. Besides, PS 130 is overcrowded, just like all other downtown elementary schools.

i bet these are just the sort of awful people who had a problem with building a mosque around the impact crater caused by chunks of falling plane like ten years ago or something. they also probably do all kinds of coke with the tea party brothers, and voted for the guy who wasn't obama, not sure his name all republicans look alike to me. just terrible awful people.

Jason: aren't you from northern CA? Don't parents there try to avoid the heavily Asian, high-achieving school districts?

Apt23: it's not that simple. Imagine if little Johnny-Tribeca's parents would rather spend their 1k or not doing some other afterschool activity over the "mandatory" afterschool at school. Or if they wanted alternative programming at the school that clashes with the needs of the other families.

Lucille: I don't think they're awful. Really. If they had gone to PS234, the social conventions would mean that the kid gets invited to people's bday parties and also has birthday parties that the class attends. Ditto playdates. Completely different world from PS130. If you thought that you signed up for one thing, you are not likely to be happy with the other.

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i think these people want their kids to have a life ;).

as for the English, i can see that a significant amount of money needs to be spent on ESL classes in the early yrs vs English teachers. it all evens out in the end.

the biggest difference is the "no life for a student" modo of the asian community vs let the kids play.

Wbottom: interesting.

If you click through to the comments section of the Tribeca Tribune article, there are quite a few 130 parent defenders. Interesting to see that PS130 siblings have lower priority than PS234 WL kids.

why can't they invite their little friends from 130 to their birthday? does the club not allow asians?

" the social conventions would mean that the kid gets invited to people's bday parties and also has birthday parties that the class attends. Ditto playdates."

sorry, but what social conventions? social conventions of rich white-ish liberal people who only want to mix with other rich white-ish liberal people and by no means with the different kinds of people who actually make new york what it is? sure, i agree with you. but then say it like that.

If you can't hang out with the other kids because of a mismatch in social convention, what does it matter what the specific backgrounds are? I refuse to speculate on whether the Tribeca parents are racist. I can well see a compelling case where they are not racist. PS234 has a 16% Asian population. Assume that incoming K is also 16% Asian. Ask those parents if they would be happy to be re-assigned to PS130.

And, as I said before, I tried to get my kid into Shuang Wen.

oh, i see, it's because they're poor. gotcha. always interesting the sort of things that encourage people to make compelling cases that no racism exists in a particular situation vs. immediately crying racism based on particular singular words and ideas that may or may not be be associated with particular ideologies.

"And, as I said before, I tried to get my kid into Shuang Wen. "

lol i think everyone here knows you're a nice lady and not racist

Didn't say that either. Maybe they are, maybe they're not.

Just because I tried to get my kid into a downtown school that's heavily Asian doesn't prove or disprove racism either.

NYC10023: the situation at Shuang Wen is absolutely not what you describe. It is not a matter of demographics. The city used to pay for the afterschool mandatory 3 hours of Chinese classes, but that got cut this year because of budget problems. At the same time, a complete psychopath became involved with the PTA. What would have been a tough situation (where to find $300,000 for the afterschool funding) turned into a bloodbath. The initial memo to the families actually implied that kids wouldn't be safe at school unless the parents ponied up $1,000/kid within 3 days. The DOE is investigating why the cost to provide Chinese instruction doubled when the PTA took over "fundraising" from the families. Incidentally, the head of Shuang wen (the Chinese non-profit which founded the school in 1998, and provided the language instruction), resigned a month ago. My understanding is that the PTA psychopath underestimated the pushback she would receive from the parents and thought it would be a good idea to use the lack of public funding to raise extra funds for the PTA, with a kickback for Shuang wen.
@Lucille: most of the Chinese kids at PS130 attend the afterschool programs. The parents often have mutliple jobs and the grandparents (who do not speak English) take care of the kids. PS 130 has fantastic academic results, but 80% of the kids qualify for free lunch. It's not a matter of race, but one of culture and social mores.

no, i got that maly. poor people smell. but not because they're asian.

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I have the comfort and ease of being cheek-by-jowl with hundreds of neighbors who send their kids to the same school. It's really, really comfortable. Our kids are back-and-forth all the time with playdates, parties, etc. Maybe our ancestors' paths diverged at a watering spot in Africa or Central Asia or maybe we're all second cousins. That, and the size of their bank accounts have NOTHING to do with it.

If you put my WL-ed kid on a list for a highly-ranked school with a sufficiently different parent body that would eliminate a similar social "wealth" for my kid, I would not be too happy about it. Might even complain to the local press. Not that I wouldn't necessarily seek out that school for reasons specific to my kid and our family.

Lucille, sincerely, go play in the bus lane. Nothing short of major brain readjustment will do.

Maly: thank you. I have followed the Shuang Wen press. Do you know anything about getting a D3 kid into Shuang Wen? I called the school a while ago, and it seemed to me that one way to to do it would be to do the lottery via the Borough Enrollment Office. That came to nothing. And pre-K might be another route, but it's oversubscribed as is.

ok, thanks for the tip. can you recommend a surgeon? just not a black one

The lottery is the only way to go, as far as I know. I hope the DOE steps hard on the PTA and replaces the principal. The situation there exposed a major lack of leadership.

"and OMG they might even bring a peanut to school!"

ok that seriously made me lol. the thought of the "tribaca" parents doing what "tribeca" parents do in a chinese school....it's funny!

No NYC public school is officially nut-free. As far as I know, you can bring a PBJ sandwich to any NYC public school, even PS234.

Lucille: would you arrange playdates with caregivers?

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Matson: exactly.

"Lucille: would you arrange playdates with caregivers? "

are you serious? i have in the past, but now my daughter is old enough that she has "friends" that she wants to play with and i arrange playdates with their mothers. i shoot the shit with nannies all time, what's wrong with that? you guys are defending their outrage because it's cause by class differences and (allegedly) not racial differences?

Then you are bucking the norm. There's nothing wrong with anything, it's quantitatively rarer to see playdates (not drop-off) at home when it's a parent the other child's caregiver. Even more rare to have a home-based non-dropoff playdate if the caregivers/parents don't have a common language.

Class aside, race aside. There are quite a few nannies around here who don't speak English because the parents are trying to teach the kid a 2nd language. It's not hard to arrange a playdate if I am in communication with the parents, but it's definitely not my go-to playdate if I can't communicate with their nanny.

matsonjones, that school has been overcrowded for years, all good school have been. what you are saying is something a reasonable person would say, but not a reasonable person with a kid approaching school age. those parents knew the score and shame on them for behaving this way. i hope they get the welcome they deserve at this school, now that the idiot parents have said all this stuff in the press and gave their names. and shame on you idiots for defending those idiots.

Yes a reasonable person would call everyone racist idiots.

Getting back to real estate, how do you think this impacts sales in Tribeca? And everywhere else in the city that supposedly has one of the top schools?

not everyone, only the racist idiots

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Malthus: having WLs has not dented the prices much in other catchments. Good zoned school is only one of the factors in high RE prices.

Any journalist would pick out the most incendiary comments.

Matt: when you actually have a kid in that situation, you would be ballistic. Given your positions on tipping and co-op boards, doubt that you would be so understanding.

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@10023: I of course agree with the second comment, but don't know how you could make the first. If I'm willing to pay a premium to live in Tribeca because of 234, I'm going to discount that premium if my kid has only a 50% chance of going there.

Because I haven't seen a dent in prices due to the WLs up here. Can't speak for Tribeca.

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It's also quantitatively difficult to track. The only way you can compare is to compare the sales price trend for a neighboring street that isn't zoned for a good school (so same nabe). So far, haven't seen a dent up here.

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I disagree that it's necessarily racism or "class". Perceived difficulty in communication and social conventions, yes.

Maybe you guys can go start an "I hate racists" thread. This is actually a real estate board.

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Lesson for parents is that if you want to send your children to a White school, you need to move to Westchester or be prepared to pay for private school.

There's schadenfreude is seeing a bunch of self-righteous white liberal elitists act like Tea Party "racists".

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"What is funny, is that by HS most of those Asian-American kids will have higher SATs than the white kids in math AND English!"

Actually, if you look up the statistics, the Chinese school has higher test scores in both English and Math than the White PS 234.

Of course, elite liberal White parents know that there are more important things in life then getting high test scores. They don't want their precious White offspring becoming computer programmers or engineers, they want their White progeny to become CEOs and Investment Bankers, jobs which require them to get into elite colleges, and those schools reject students with high SATs in favor of more "well-rounded" students who excel at sports and other "leadership" activities.

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The real problem is people these days just don't want to leave Manhattan after they have kids. I live in the neigborhood. I have one child. But I see plenty of people with 2 or even 3 kids living in 2 bedroom or even 1 bedroom apts around here and in BPC. It is one thing if both parents work and you can afford to have 3 or 4 bedroom apt in the city to room all the children you want. It is something else to see stay-at-home Moms around here with 2 or even 3 kids living in 2 bedroom apts. Hello? You obviously don't have any time to enjoy the city because you are chasing after your kids! So why not just accept the reality and move to suburbs? If you want to have lots of kids but cannot afford a place that can house all of them, you should move out of the city! Then the over-crowding problems at public schools would be solved.

jqzeng, I think that some parents see moving out of Manhattan as admitting economic defeat. Admitting they are losers.

But yes, times have changed. Thirty-five years ago, it was "common sense" to not raise kids in Manhattan. Some of that common sense was based on keeping your kids away from blacks. Those were the days before "diversity" was "celebrated." But as we see form this article, not too much diversity (even if the diversity comes in the form of studious Chinese kids who aren't going to beat up your precious White offspring).

The other part of the common sense was that kids need room to run around and play. But nowadays, we don't let kids run around and play, they are shuttled to structured and supervised activities, so maybe the open space of the suburbs is no longer important.

Bobby: But what's the point of getting great SATs and being accepted into an Ivy if you hit the bamboo ceiling anyway?

See http://nymag.com/news/features/asian-americans-2011-5/

Paper Tigers
What happens to all the Asian-American overachievers when the test-taking ends?

Oh no, white parents don't want to send their kids to school with Asians. Oh the horror. They will get beaten up by some kid who knows Kung Fu and they will have to eat rice every day. Oh no.

"If you want to have lots of kids but cannot afford a place that can house all of them, you should move out of the city!"

Or keep your pants on. Uh-oh, I said it. Where are the PC police?

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The truth is really well to do people send their kids to private schools no matter where they live in the city.

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Jqzeng: ah, that's why you one-child families really think of us!

Matson Jones: this is the story of PS 184 Shuang Wen, not PS 130. PS 184 admits through lottery, so no-one will end up there against their will. Just for the record, the head of Shuang Wen (who just resigned) was new this year and got his job through old-fashioned nepotism. He is of Taiwanese descent (Shuang wen is a Taiwanese association, and teaches Taiwanese Mandarin. The PTA psycho is as whitebread as they come, so it goes to show, New Yorkers can work together across racial lines to rip off people. It's heartwarming, no?

PS 130 really is a fantastic school and doesn't have any such issues. The principal is especially impressive, and she runs a tight ship. It's unfortunate the school doesn't have a playground across the street, because that's what is messing up the social element imo: the lack of nearby neutral open space for parents and caregivers to get to know each other.

So they put all their the money in real estate but when it comes to their kids public school is ok?? I don't get it. I have a problem with public school because in most of them the ratio student to kids is much bigger than in private

By the way chinese education is very strict so they shouldn't be so disappointed..

jqzeng "The truth is really well to do people send their kids to private schools no matter where they live in the city."

Well said.

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No it's not, I know it from parents that have send their kids to both and that's why they took their kids out from public. Might be "on paper"

I meant ratio students to teacher

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socialist, if everyone kept their pants on our species cease to be. we would be no more.

" I think that some parents see moving out of Manhattan as admitting economic defeat. Admitting they are losers."

bob_d, i don't think they're afraid of being losers. i think they're afraid of being perceived as average. it's not a love of new york that keeps people like this here, they don't love new york and they certainly don't like new yorkers. it's a fear of accepting their own mediocrity.

Wbottom: if only it were that simple. Is a well-regarded cash-strapped, overcrowded public schools worse than any private school? The monthly nut (rent or own) for many families in good public school zones is still less than renting/owning in a cheaper area with approx. same commute & paying for private (even for 1 kid).

Lucille: it's not always cheaper to leave Manhattan. Some families make choices based on tradeoffs - they make it work with less space so that the working parent or parents can see more of their children. I think that far outweighs any love of "prestige" or facing up to their inadequacies. You read way too much into it.

you make it seem like everyone in new york lives within a few blocks of their place of employment. how many people commute to wall st. from uptown? you think their commute is shorter than that of someone who can see thier office from their window in jc? it is not prestige, it is retarded snob appeal. people like this think they are snobs, when in fact they are pathetic sycophants. NOT YOU you are a very nice person.

There are far fewer uptown -> Wall Street commutes among the public school set I know. People tend to have quite short commutes (which is why we're uptown!) And for two working parents, the number of families with two uptown -> WS commutes is even smaller. But we're not talking about moving to JC from a Manhattan neighborhood with decent publics - I thought JC schools were iffy? We're talking about moving to a good burb system from said nabe with decent zoned publics. How is this retarded snob appeal? Commutes are definitely more difficult from a burb in general. There are also a high number of free-lancers, and being in the city helps.

As hard as I try, I don't know anyone who is perversely trying to stay in Manhattan for reasons of faux-prestige or snob appeal even though their apt is "too small". Everything else works for them until it doesn't. And they'll move.

that's actually something i wanted to investigate. jc's schools do suck from my limited scope of knowledge of jc schools. jc also has the highest concentration of indians outside india, so...they should be better, right? don't really know. i'm not saying people should move to jc (and if they do they should move to real jc with multicolored ethnics and yummy hole in the wall eateries, not the fake waterfront "gold" coast), but at some point you have to grow up, examine your life and everyone who depends on you, and choose what's right, not what feels right. and i'm with the 1 childrened lady, get the f8ck out of this city! just go be normal somewhere! i'll be 100% honest with you, it wasn't the real estate that drove *my* family away. it was the new and improved status-facist new yorkers. people who don't even understand why they want the things they think they want.

Dunno the specific stats, but all the "multi-colored" ethnics I know live on the gold coast. The public school system racial stats don't show a high Indian-American population. Maybe they all move to the NJ burbs if they can afford to.

the stats may not show it, but they're there. your friends have never been to the Diwali thing in jc? they're there. i seen'em

"there" = jc not the public schools. the indian community in jc is known around the world, it's a huge locale for them.

If the public schools don't have a high Indian-American population, it's possible that families with young children leave for better school systems in the NJ area. You were asking why the schools weren't better given the Indian-American population?

it's jsut something i was always curious about. maybe they leave or do private.

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The benefit of being rich is that you can send your kids to a private school where they don't have to compete against Asians who spend all waking hours studying.

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