If you've been following the story here and at the GEM blog all summer, you are aware of the aggressive nature with which Eva (now officially being dubbed 'Evil') Moskowitz' people run roughshod over people. I don't have time to gather all the resources in this post but just do a search for PS 123 and PS 241.
GEM has been working with other groups to try to bring all the schools wanting to resist the invasion by charter schools into their buildings together. One of the focal points has been Moskowitz' Harlem Success Academy schools such as those at PS 241 and 123. If you read one piece, read this one from "Shocked in Harlem," a teacher at PS 241 about the impossible chaos of trying to get ready for the new school year in a school invaded by Moskowitz. SHOCKED IN HARLEM AT EVA MOSKOWITZ, HSA EXCESS
Teachers at PS 123 faced the same chaos, with halls loaded with stuff moved out by Harlem Success. Check out some of the videos I posted in the sidebar for more on this issue from early July when Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer toured the school (mayoral candidate Tony Avella also came up that day).
Were Teachers at PS 123 Told to Go Home?
Supposedly the UFT district rep told teachers to go home yesterday after teachers were trying to move things around to get ready for the first day of school today. Rumor is that a teacher got hurt and had to go to the emergency room. UFT president Mulgrew was called. One would expect him to be there today. But with the UFT having taken over space in two charter schools themselves in East NY, Brooklyn, they cannot claim any moral high ground and can only expect the massive HSA publicity machine to attack them with the consequent fawning NYC ed press quoting them widely.
Brooklyn Charter Invasion Resistance
Meanwhile, things are beginning to heat up in Brooklyn where CAPE (Concerned Educators for Public Education) is organizing around the charter school issue. Some GEMers will be going to a meeting with them this week and we will report on the activities over there. See their press release from our post in July.
I'll add updates to this post as they come in.
Report from PS 160 in Coop City
Here are some comments from parents at PS 160x
GEM you were right. Equality Charter School lied about only being at PS160 for 2 years. They said it at all the hearings and the DOE said they will only be there for 2 years. Now the Equality principal told the Co-op City Times yesterday, September 5,
"School administrators have been told by the DOE that there is a probability that the school will be moved to a new location within the next few years as the student body expands by one grade each year."
They LIED. You were right. They lied about leaving in two years. They're not ever gonna leave. They're gonna push out 160 students and take over. Their classrooms were also painted and their entire section refurbished!!! Please tell the parents. The truth is out. We need you to come back to our school and fight with us against privatization and pushing our children out of their own schools.
Which led to this response:
Anonymous, I like your enthusiasm. I am one of the parents who spoke out about this charter school being housed at PS 160. I must say that this upcoming school year will be a challenging one at PS 160. My advice to you as a parent is that if you see anything that you feel in your heart is not right report it to the Parent coordinator or the Principal immediately. It is our responsibility as parents to look out for our children. When there is an announcement about the PTA meetings and things of that nature, please attend. This will be the only way to stay informed and fight for your child/children’s education. Furthermore, just to speak about the article in the newspaper. What I want to know is how they are going to handle their students who are late or truant? The Prinicpal mentioned that the students who arrive after 9:00am will enter thru the front of the building. We as parents of PS 160 children age 5-11 years old...must demand that the Equality School Administrators send an "official employee" and not another "responsible student" to come down to the main lobby where Mrs. Cox will be seated and pick up the “late” student and make sure that they get placed in their respective class room. Their students must not be allowed to "freely" room the halls of our two floors. We must think to be PRO-ACTIVE and not be Reactive.
No school is safe
Here is a partial list of public schools being invaded:
PS 15K, PS 38M, IS 45M, PS 123M, PS 150K, PS 160X, PS 175M, PS 185M, PS 188M, PS 194M, IS 195M, PS 241M, PS 242M, PS 375M, PS 385X, HS 695M and many more.
Which schools will be next?
Principal gets around hiring freeze on ATRs
Changing the subject....but not really, since the ATR, rubber room, closing schools, charter school issues all connect to the free market neoliberal agenda....I received this note from a teacher at a large high school:
They found a way to hire teachers other than ATRs in my school. I don't want to post it on my blog, but others need to be aware this is going on. There is no hiring freeze on special education. They are getting the new teachers double certification and hiring them for the special ed department and then farming them out to math to teach. If this is going on in my school, it is going on throughout the city. One ATR in my school has been given a full program for a person on leave, but the school will not hire her full time.