New York CIty Council Member Ben Kallos

New York Post

New York Post City councilman wants to waive CUNY application fees for NYC students by Selim Algar

City councilman wants to waive CUNY application fees for NYC students

City Councilman Ben Kallos is pushing legislation that would waive application fees for city public school students hoping to enroll at CUNY colleges.

Roughly 75,000 Department of Education kids apply to the public schools each year and pay $65 to do so.

“It’s unacceptable that right now, a 17-year-old can be told by a high school guidance counselor their rent-burdened single mother isn’t poor enough to get a break on hundreds of dollars of fees to apply to colleges and compete for scholarships,” said Kallos, who co-sponsored the bill introduced last week.

Overall, the initiative would cost the city roughly $4.8 million.

Around 75,000 New York City public schools students apply to CUNY colleges every year.

Erik McGregor/LightRocket via Getty Images

“This legislation is about bringing more access and equity to the families that struggle,” he said. “A $65 fee should not be what prevents a talented kid from getting into a CUNY.”

The largest urban university system in the country, CUNY currently runs 11 senior campuses along with seven community colleges across the boroughs.

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer is co-sponsoring Councilman Ben Kallos’ effort.

Stefan Jeremiah for New York Post

The schools currently enroll roughly 275,000 students.

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer is co-sponsoring the legislation.

Mayoral candidate and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams also supports the effort.

Ron Adar / M10s / MEGA

“College application fees can be a financial burden for our public school students,” she said. “This legislation will make applying to CUNY more accessible for high schoolers and will help make their dreams of a college education possible.”

Mayoral candidate and current Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams is also backing the push.

New York Post NYPD’s robot dog will be returned after outrage by Tamar Lapin

NYPD’s robot dog will be returned after outrage

Kallos, who has proposed legislation to ban NYPD from using any weaponized robots or drones, told the Times that the dog underscored what he called the “militarization of the police.”

“At a time where we should be having more beat cops on the street, building relationships with residents, they’re actually headed in another direction in trying to replace them with robots,” the Manhattan rep said.

New York Post UES residents at war with New York Blood Center over HQ building plans by Melissa Klein

UES residents at war with New York Blood Center over HQ building plans

City Councilman Ben Kallos, who represents the area, said the Blood Center has not been transparent about the lab.

“I hate to think of what they’re cooking up in there,” he said.

The Blood Center told The Post the lab will be for its use only and “is a necessary component for the research and development of new antivirals and vaccines.” It said it has used the lab for hepatitis and HIV research in the past.

The Blood Center has tried unsuccessfully for a rezoning and expansion several times, Kallos said.

New York Post City council subpoenas NYPD for cost of robot dog by David Meyer

City council subpoenas NYPD for cost of robot dog

The city council wants to force NYPD to reveal the cost of its new “Digidog,” days after Mayor Bill de Blasio suggested the city “rethink” its use of the dystopian police robot dog.

Council leaders on Monday subpoenaed the NYPD for any robot-related contracts or agreements with Boston Dynamics, the company behind the four-legged robo-cop.

“The public should know how much each of these devices is costing the city,” said Councilman Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan), who issued the subpoena along with Council Speaker Corey Johnson.

New York Post De Blasio says ‘we should rethink’ NYPD’s robot dog over public concerns by Sam Raskin, Amanda Woods

De Blasio says ‘we should rethink’ NYPD’s robot dog over public concerns

The NYPD needs to “rethink” its new “Digidog,” Mayor de Blasio said Wednesday — a day after a clip of the robotic dog in action went viral and sent tongues wagging.

Hizzoner hesitated when he was questioned about the video, which been viewed more than 8 million times and left some to compare the programmable pooch to an episode of “Black Mirror.”

“I haven’t seen it, but I certainly share the concern that if in any way it’s unsettling to people, we should rethink the equation,” de Blasio said at his daily press briefing. “I don’t know what is being done to test it — I’ll certainly talk to the commissioner about it. I don’t want people to feel that something is happening that they don’t know about. So we’ll work that out.”

The clip showed the “Digidog” casually strolling out of a housing project in Manhattan following the arrest of Luis Gonzales, 41, an NYPD rep said Tuesday.

Cops arrived to the scene to find Gonzales sequestered inside an apartment with a mother and baby, who exited unharmed, the NYPD said. Gonzales was apprehended after about two hours of negotiations.

New York Post Councilman Ben Kallos wants to ban NYPD from using ‘weaponized robots’ by David Meyer

Councilman Ben Kallos wants to ban NYPD from using ‘weaponized robots’

The NYPD has not disclosed the cost of each “Digidog,” Kallos said.

“People are already concerned about militarizing police, and this is stopping them before they get any further,” he said.

“We passed a bill back in the city council that they were supposed to disclose that they were using these robots, and they didn’t. So who knows what’s in store?”

He is also exploring ways to limit NYPD use of aerial drones, which are regulated on the federal level.

“Whether it’s robots or drones, we need to move away from overpolicing communities and get back to the basics of investing in people and giving people the resources they need,” Kallos said.

New York Post New legislation would force DOE to release school health care information by Selim Algar

New legislation would force DOE to release school health care information

A City Councilman wants the Department of Education to spell out which schools are providing healthcare support to their students.

Councilman Ben Kallos is re-introducing legislation this week that would compel the DOE to reveal which schools offer services like vision care and HPV vaccines.

“We should know exactly which health services are available to which public schools so that we can ensure all 1.1 million public school students have access to the health services they need,” Kallos said.

The Manhattan Democrat said the DOE has not been adequately transparent about healthcare resources in city school buildings and should be legally obligated to do so.

New York Post NYC families say DOE dropped French dual-language program at last minute by Selim Algar

NYC families say DOE dropped French dual-language program at last minute

City Councilman Ben Kallos, who also pushed for the program, called for its reinstatement.

“The faster we bring the program to more francophone families that need it, the better off the children will be,” he said.

New York Post NYC will try using school buses to give Wi-Fi to students in homeless shelters by Susan Edelman

NYC will try using school buses to give Wi-Fi to students in homeless shelters

After ignoring an offer from school bus companies for months, the city will finally explore whether the vehicles can be used to deliver Wi-Fi to students living in homeless shelters who can’t connect to online classes, officials told The Post.

...

Mayor de Blasio has committed to a long-term plan to provide Wi-Fi service in all apartments in existing and planned homeless shelters that serve families with children But that project is complicated because many shelters lack cables. Completion is not expected until summer — after the current school year ends.

Councilman Ben Kallos suggested hooking up Wi-Fi to TV cables in a shelter’s common area, but officials say the COVID-19 crisis raises health and safety concerns.

New York Post New bill would give loaded laptop to every NYC student by Susan Edelman

New bill would give loaded laptop to every NYC student

The city will have to give a laptop loaded with “culturally responsive” textbooks to every student under a bill to be introduced next week by Council Members Ben Kallos and Farah Louis.

The measure was prompted by a Department of Education official’s stunning testimony at a recent City Council hearing that 77,000 students still lack internet-equipped iPads needed for remote learning.

“Every student should have a computer and internet as part of their public school education. The homework gap was bad before the pandemic and has only gotten worse for low-income students of color who don’t have the internet or a device with a keyboard in their home,” Kallos said.

Students in city schools get both fully remote and blended instruction, a mix of in-person and online classes.

While the DOE recently ordered 100,000 iPads in addition to 300,000 it distributed during the COVID-19 shutdown, the bill emphasizes laptops with keyboards — especially for older students.

“It’s really hard to type out a 1,000-word essay by hunting and pecking each letter,” Kallos told The Post.

The bill would require that all students get laptops or tablets loaded with “culturally responsive” textbooks which reflect student diversity. The books can be obtained for free, Kallos said.

The legislation also would require the DOE to give an annual report on the number and cost of devices distributed, as well as the housing status of students receiving them. Even with Internet-equipped devices, many students living in homeless shelters don’t have access to WiFi.

Kallos and Lewis plan to introduce the bill on Thursday.