Friday, July 17, 2009

Are Charters Beginning to Run Out of Kids to Cream?

Dorothy asked this yesterday on the NYC Ed News List:
I know everyone is aware that there is a meeting tonight in D-22 over a new charter school, Brooklyn Dream. Now i understand there will be another meeting July 30 (amazing all this in the summer when so many of us are away or travelling) they want to bring 3 new charter schools at that meeting. All of them supposedly targeted for Dist 22, which if any one feels like checking is one of the highest performing districts in the city. Even with all the DOE has done, any child attending ANY elementary school will get an excellent education. Why all the charters?
I think right off the bat they fear that governance will stay the way it is, (one can only pray) and that there will be legitimate school board elections. Once those boards are in place, even assuming the mayor and his people will ignore that law as they ignored all the other laws, but I don't think it will be as east to bamboozle a legally elected csb.
I have advised our presidents council to start contacting Albany and find out why the push to stick all these charters in an area that does not want them.

Seung responded:
Dorothy does raise a good question. Why are the powers that be, trying to infiltrate A performing schools? I would presume they would have an easier time invading building of struggling schools where parent involvement is a problem? Any theories?
Possible theories: Charters do not want parents to apply (even by lottery) from areas plagued by unemployment and low income?
Building size? The primary factor being, only a few select public school buildings are big enough to even pretend to justify an invasion?

Here is my response:

My guess is that they see signs of running out of kids to cream and are now reaching a point where instead of only competing with public schools they are now beginning to compete with each other. Thus the search for fertile new territory and where better than reaching into areas of the city with a bigger population of threes and fours pool to access?

Last night at Shellbank, Brooklyn Dreams came off as looking pathetic as they search through south Brooklyn for the right sweet spot. Asked to define what they offer that public schools don't, the only thing they could come up with is "smaller class sizes". Duhhh!

Facing vehement resistance, they seem to be aiming for the northern part of Dist 22 and southern part of Dist. 17.

There were some excellent speeches made, mostly by parents. But Lou Fidler nailed them.
(Video in the next day or two.)

The UFT is somewhat pathetic in these situations. Brooklyn Dreams not asking for space in a public school (which we know is often just a ploy to get approval before coming up with the "we looked and looked" argument. But the UFT didn't look. They just occupy space in two public schools. So the UFT people can only say, "Why this district which doesn't need charter schools because it is so successful."

Thus they have to skulk around behind the scenes when teachers start screaming.

They can't really stand up to Eva Moskowitz's land grab when they also grabbed land. I'm surprised the Moskowitz PR machine which called PS 123 a UFT school.

Of course the HSA stuff is a joke when it says,
"The UFT knows that parents are choosing to abandon the UFT schools in Harlem in droves."

UFT schools? How about Joel Klein/Mike Bloomberg schools?

Will there be a day soon when the Harlem charter schools start fighting it out with each other?
Look for the heavyweight match of KIPP vs. HSA. (David - time to get that cartoon machine going.)

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