Saturday, December 12, 2009

Get Out the Swords: DOE proposes to let PAVE stay in P.S. 15 an additional five years

"We will not rest until the truth is exposed and the agreement for PAVE to leave by 2010 is honored. If the DOE or anyone else thinks we will give up; they are mistaken… through the courts through civil disobedience, one way or another- PS 15 and public education will be protected."

Power breeds arrogance. And absolute power breeds absolute arrogance. It was clear from the beginning that when a billionaire hedge fund manager's son wants a public school building for his play school, he will get it from the BloomKlein administration. Remember when Spencer Robertson declared at the Sept. 15 CEC15 meeting that he had found a building and will move out of PS 15 as soon as he could? The PS 15 community guffawed and called him a liar. They had been facing so many lies from PAVE that nothing was believable.

And so it was. And is.

Maura Walz at Gotham posted the news at Gotham last night that Tweed was going beyond the PAVE 2 year request and would allow PAVE to stay at PS 15 until 2015 and add 5 more grades. I forwarded the news to the CAPE crew at PS 15. They are pouring out their outrage in the comments section at Gotham. Join them.

Read the full CAPE response:

The DOE Does it Again

What is clear is that if a school functions too well to close, Tweed will go get them another way: Install a cancer/charter and allow it to grow unchecked while at the same time using your power to squeeze the healthy public schools until it gets sick and dies. It reminds me of those vines that start growing up a healthy tree and feeding off it until it kills the tree and takes over what is left.

Does anyone have a doubt that by 2015, PS 15 will be gone and PAVE will be occupying the entire building?

The CAPE response opens with:

It is unclear what is more disturbing: The Department of Education’s surreptitious school space utilization and formulas, their incompetence in interpreting these very formulas, their damning disregard for what is best for children not to mention parent and community voices, their corrupted charter school movement, their deliberate defiling of public education and community public schools, or their lubricated lies that slide off their tongues dripping and oozing with Orwellian language that loudly proclaims, “we have an agenda, and we fully intend to execute it.”

Near the end, CAPE says:

This is clearly a fight the DOE wants to have: RAISE YOUR SWORDS!!!

And raise their swords they will.

We met with CAPE the other evening, as Brooklyn GEM and CAPE are putting together a series of events on charter schools. There is not one meeting we have with CAPE where we don't come out feeling the entire time was productive. This is one savvy, tough group of public education advocates. That they are in one school gives us hope there are other such groupings around. I mean, earth is not the only planet in the universe with life.

I want to thank Tweed for doing such dumb stuff that led to this group coming together and joining up with other advocates forming around the city. They have uncovered some hornet's nest. As part of a group of organizers so often frustrated by the lack of fight all too many teachers exhibit, I genuflect to Tweed for helping to create CAPE. Keep up the good work. One day you will find thousands of people pounding at your door.

Better start beefing up security. Can you spell C-I-V-I-L D-I-S-O-B-E-D-I-E-N-C-E?


The Perimeter Primate said...

Bill Moyers Journal last night (12/11) was inspiring. The first segment featured organizers George Goehl and Heather Booth who talked about turning anger into action.

The second segment featured Howard Zinn who talked about the ideas in his book: "The idea of people involved in history, people actively making history, people agitating and demonstrating, and pushing the leaders of the country into change in a way that leaders themselves are not likely to initiate."

Watch the videos and read the transcripts online at

Anonymous said...

Thank you Norm! I have tears in my eyes right now, seriously. This really is a battle cry to all educators and parents in New York City... from the steps of our schools to the mayor's doorstep our voices will be heard!

Concerned Advocates said...

We all stand strong and together to protect public education. Thank you Norm, and GEM for your amazing work in exposing the charter virus to those who many not know about it. Watch out! It's coming to your school next if you don't act now!

Anonymous said...

Norm, I have to mirror the comment of my Concerned Advocate colleague. What a relief and joy to find you and GEM! Thank you for all you do!!!