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More Than 1 Million NYC Public School Students Head Back To School Thursday

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – New York City Public Schools are set to reopen tomorrow.

This year, the Department of Education says it has expanded efforts to increase economic diversity in the classroom.  A certain percentage of seats have been reserved for low income students in seven elementary schools. Officials are also trying to expand diversity at specialized high schools like Bronx Science and Stuyvesant.

“In all that we’re doing in the schools, we want to increase the quality in our schools,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “It’s also important to see that our kids get together from all backgrounds.”

“We’re going to make sure that across the board we’re raising the quality of our schools,” he added. “We need that to happen across our school system.”

De Blasio said that he wants state legislators to change admission practices to the specialized high schools so that they are not based on a single test.

More: Get Back Into School Mode | Back To School Shopping In NYC

As part of a literacy initiative, reading coaches will be placed in about 100 schools. Their long-term goal is for all children to be reading at grade level by the end of the second grade.

The school system is also working to reduce suspensions through “restorative justice” programs, deescalation techniques and collaborative problem solving.

Some teachers and principals have said, however, that there hasn’t been enough training in the program, 1010 WINS reported. Some advocates also said the reforms don’t go far enough.

“What we’re seeing already is amazing progress on reducing crime in schools,” de Blasio said. “Over the last five years a 35 percent decrease in crime in our schools.”

Finally, we’d like to know what questions for Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina? Let us know on our Facebook page.

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