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School Choice and Commuting

October 1, 2018
How Far New York City Students Travel to School

Urban Institute

New York City offers considerable public school choice at all levels of schooling. Options include traditional neighborhood zoned schools, magnet and gifted and talented programs, dual language schools, charter schools, exam-based specialized high schools, and a citywide high school choice program. The city’s density and public transit system put many of these options within reach, and the NYC Department of Education provides half- or full-fare MetroCards to subsidize pupil transportation by bus and subway.

While school choice provides opportunities for families to seek out the best school for them, it can lead to more time commuting to school. In this report, geographic student and school location data are used to estimate commuting times for NYC elementary, middle, and high school students.

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