Thursday, January 8, 2015

A Day at the Rages UPDATED - Did Moskowitz Back Down or Did the DOE Do a Deal Behind the Scenes?

UPDATED: DNAInfo- Lower East Side Success Academy Delayed for 2 Years, Officials Say

Chalkbeat: http://ny.chalkbeat.org/2015/01/08/success-academy-cancels-its-plans-to-open-new-schools-in-2015/#.VK_gxydZhOd

Deferred Success

The Success Academy charter school network has abandoned plans to open four schools in the upcoming school year, following negotiations with the city last month in which Success secured public space for 10 schools in 2016.

Even after news got out that Success Academy was scraping its plans for next school year, Lower East Side parents and elected officials went ahead with a hearing to oppose a new Success charter school in District 1.

 


I'm really glad Chalkbeat covered this event. Thank you! As someone present at the event though, I think use of the word "makeshift" is an unfairly derogatory choice to describe the well-organized and persistent activism of LES parents. This article neglects to mention that though many went home early, perhaps due to family responsibilities, the auditorium was initially full of community members. Yes, the posters were home-made, and the speakers wore sweaters, not suits, but that's what real activism (not the well-funded Success Academy kind) looks like. It was inspiring to hear from the parents, teachers, and students who made it out last night to demand quality public schools for all the students in their district, not just their own children, and their efforts should be lauded, or, at least reported using more objective terms.
Raging Horse Blog report:
Insulted at such cavalier treatment, CEC 1’s fearless President Lisa Donlon decided to hold a public forum in its stead in which members of the Lower East Side community could speak their mind about Moskowitz and her ever expanding charter empire.
This they did. Fervently. Angrily. Passionately.... Speaker after speaker told horror stories about dealing with Success Academy and while there was a sense of relief at the DOE’s announcement, there was no misunderstanding the fact that Moskowitz and her hedge fund backers would be back when they sensed the time was right.....The crowd of about 200 people included parents, principals, and teachers, including a contingent from MORE. It was refreshing to witness such a display of rebellious intelligence and community.

MOREistas in the house - I counted about 10-a dozen all told
The coldest day turned into the busiest day. First up was Peter Zucker's (South Bronx School) 3020a hearing. I thought today the principal would be cross-examined but it turned into another half day of listening to her drone on. I have dozed off at every one of her appearances. Can we bottle tapes of her to replace sleeping pills? We went to lunch and when we came back we were waiting around for some documents to be turned over.

Done for the day and I headed over to the Lower East Side for the event being held to replace the cancelled Success Academy hearing by Community Education Council plus politicians and other community leaders, led by City Councilwoman Rosie Mendez and CEC1's Lisa Donlan. After a stop at Patrick Walsh's apartment for some coffee, we headed over to PS 20, where I taped over 2 hours of testimony and comments. Success had to drag a parent down from Washington Heights to try to make some case - only one other person spoke favorably for charters. Funny, but a UFT rep got up and while opposing Eva said she was not against charters -- toeing to the line for the UFT.

Here is Raging Horse's take: Moskowitz Backs Down (For the time Being)
and some photos -- video tomorrow or Saturday.


Rosie Mendez, one of the leaders of the band









Lisa Donlan and Rosie Mendez



MORE's Alexandra Alves comments

And Jia Lee too






1 comment:

  1. I'm really glad Chalkbeat covered this event. Thank you! As someone present at the event though, I think use of the word "makeshift" is an unfairly derogatory choice to describe the well-organized and persistent activism of LES parents.

    Date Sheet 2015 of SSC Class

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