Boston’s schools a major issue for mayoral hopefuls

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Councilor at Large Felix Arroyo wants a longer school day. John Barros, a former School Committee member, has called for a “citywide learning system.” And Councilor at Large John Connolly introduced a “hubs of opportunity” initiative.

In the race to succeed Mayor Thomas M. Menino, proposals to overhaul the Boston public schools abound, making education one of the most talked-about issues thus far.

The prominence of the school issue surprises few. Often the quality of a city’s school system serves as a barometer of its health, and the Boston school system, in spite of two decades of gains made under Menino, still has a long way to go in offering all students a good education, observers say.

Many of the 12 candidates, in discussing the need to bolster school quality, frame it as both an economic and a quality-of-life issue, as Arroyo did in a recent interview. “Strong schools help build stronger neighborhoods and a stronger economy,” he said.

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