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De Blasio Seeks More Diversity for NYC’s Elite Schools

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, who took office Jan. 1 promising to reduce economic inequality, said he wants to end a 43-year policy that restricts admission at the city’s elite high schools to students who score highest on a standardized test.

The rule has been debated since a 1971 state law made the test the only criterion to gain entry to eight specialized public schools that offer college-preparatory curriculum and whose alumni include Nobel laureates and Pulitzer Prize winners. Bills in the legislature backed by the teachers union and set to be reintroduced next year would allow use of other measures, including grades, attendance and scores on other exams.