Monday, November 30, 2009

Comments on NY Times article on Charter school shared space

Another one slammed out of the park by the CAPErs at PS 15.

Commentary on the NY Times article on shared space in public schools.

What can money buy you in New York City? Apparently not your own real estate. Instead, these corporate backed, millionaire and billionaire donor driven private companies and organizations, use public money and public resources to fund their school experiments.
Their money buys fancy computers, paint, and new furniture. It buys them glossy flyers, robo-calls, mailers, and t-shirts. It can buy them press coverage, even the final say in the New York Times!
Money can buy you power, and in NYC, money and power go a long way. What our neo-liberal and conservative friends fail to see however, because their money blinds them, is the ultimate consequence of their race to the top, their greed, their pestilence; the undermining of our society, the destruction of our democracy, the ruin of what it is that makes us great; an ideal that in this country all are created equal, that we have rights, and among them, we decided long ago, is the right to a free and fair public education that rejects separate but equal and seeks to prepare thoughtful citizens of the world.

Money can buy you a school in New York City. It can buy you stolen goods off the backs of our children and their schools and it can place you on the front lines of a movement to dismantle public education. Luckily for us, the parents of teachers of CAPE, we don't have money. All we have is our integrity, truth, and honor. We have our voices and together we call for the protection and preservation of public education and our community public schools.


What Your Money Can and Cannot Buy

Monday, November 23, 2009

Charter Schools Occupying Space in NYC Public School Buildings

Mucho thanks to Mollie from GEM for putting this list together.

Organized by District


Here is another view of the list with more detail
Charters in Public Schools 2009

Sunday, November 22, 2009

PS 15/PAVE Story Redux

Cross-posted on Ed Notes

CAPE, which was formed to battle the PAVE invasion at PS 15 (and is now working with GEM to reach out to other schools in the same situation) posted an announcement this morning that it ain't over 'till it's over.

The CEC15 has bravely forced the DOE to at least pretend to function within the realm of our republic and has agreed to have a public hearing and have the PEP vote on whether PAVE Academy should be able to extend their two year agreement, an agreement by which this charter was sold to the Red Hook Community who fought it.

Please join in our fight to protect and preserve public education, our children and our school! Sign the online petition and circulate it. Contact the NYC PEP and tell them to vote no in allowing PAVE to break their agreement and stay housed in PS 15's building past June 2010... further, we need to fight to expose the faulty DOE formula that is hurting schools and our children.

While some people thought the battle was over when the DOE ruled, as expected, to give PAVE its 2-year extension, Jim Devor of CEC15, which held a contentious meeting at PS 15 back in September, filed a complaint that under the mayoral control renewal law, the PEP must discuss the issue first and then rule in favor of PAVE. This will happen at the January 26 PEP meeting, which will held in the crater of the moon where water was discovered. I'm guessing the vote will be 9 to 2 for PAVE (money and influence talks) but it all should be a worthwhile event.

Ed Notes covered the story from the beginning and we have lots of video from the Sept. 17 meeting. The single best piece is PS 15 Makes Their Case. (Use the search blog for PAVE to find more coverage.)

Excerpts from the Gotham Schools report:

Responding to protests that it was breaking the new mayoral control law, the Department of Education will hold a public hearing before extending PAVE Academy Charter School’s stay inside a district-owned building. The law passed this summer requires the DOE to issue an “educational impact statement” and hold a public hearing on any proposed changes to the way school building space is used, and then to put changes to a vote before the city-wide Panel for Educational Policy.

Last month, DOE officials notified the principals of Red Hook’s PAVE Academy and P.S. 15 that the charter school would remain in the P.S. 15 building, even though PAVE originally agreed to leave the building at the end of this school year. At the time, DOE spokeswoman Ann Forte said that there was no need to follow the new rules since a hearing had been held before the charter school moved into the building two years ago. But after protests from the district’s Community Education Council members, DOE officials said this week they will follow the new procedure after all.

CEC President James Devor drafted a resolution this week calling on the DOE to follow the new law in the case of P.S. 15. The resolution also states that if the DOE does not follow the new procedure in making space decisions regarding P.S. 15 and PAVE, it would join any lawsuit designed to force the DOE to adhere to the law.

A CAPEr commented at Gotham:

This is a victory for due process, for what we have been fighting for. Now we need to make sure the process is transparent… a hearing is one thing, being heard is another. What is at issue here is not charter schools (although many of us have opinions about them), what is at issue is a faulty DOE space sharing formula that is bad for kids and bad for schools— and not for nothing– both groups of kids and schools!

The DOE formula does not take into account the space demands of our special education population and does not take into account a full prep schedule, as well as the space needed for the enrichment and intervention services that make PS 15 an AAA school. I should also mention we have a medical, dental, and social services program at our school as well that requires space.

We all feel for PAVE parents who fear losing a place for their child’s school, but firstly, this is the fault of Robertson and his poor leadership, planning, and judgement and second of all, PS 15 students should not suffer for his incompetence. He has more than enough money to go and find himself a space somewhere else where he would not be negatively impacting the education of over 350 other students, whose parents choose PS 15. We should not be functioning in a system where we rob Paul to pay Peter. Support our fight in keeping PAVE to their two year agreement!

Friday, November 20, 2009

GEM/CAPE Meet, Will Do Two Conferences on Public Schools and Charters

A group from GEM and CAPE met this past week to discuss plans for holding conferences and workshops on public education and the impact of the charter school movement sometime this year. Details will be announced as the conferences take shape.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

GEM NEWS: November, 2009

Share with your colleagues. Download the pdf:

Click to enlarge.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Separate & Unequal at PS123M with Charter Invasion

Summer’09, Harlem:
CEO Eva Moskowitz's HSA2 Private Charter School took over P123's third floor with the NYC Dept of Education (DOE) approval. CEO Moskowitz newly painted, lavishly renovated and refurnished HER third floor with state-of-the-art equipment.
ONLY a limited number of lottery-selected students benefit from those separate elitist conditions. BUT the majority of the PS123 (2nd & 3rd floor) students have the same older unequal facilities.

The following photo essay shows the unjust and unequal conditions facing PS 123. The DOE's imposition of a private-charter school at the public PS 123 has divided the community there.

Successful schools, especially in crisis times, need united parents and staff, not the divisive cut-throat competition fomented by the DOE.
(Click title to download photo essay.)