Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Letitia James on Board: Big Boost to the Save JHS 145 Campaign

Public Advocate Letitia James today called on Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina to slam the brakes on plans to shutter six Renewal Schools, saying the DOE has failed to deliver on promises like smaller class sizes and bilingual teachers for immigrant students.
Good news from James and a press conference today in advance of tomorrow's PEP votes to close 6 Renewal schools. Keep in mind that this is an Eva Moskowitz takeover school and closing 145 and basically turning the building over to an anti-union, no-excuses repressive school is playing into the Trump/DeVos game plan.
James said she was “particularly concerned” about the DOE’s proposal to close Junior High 145 in the Bronx without the approval of the local Community Education Council. In a letter to Farina, James said state education law “states that CECs must approve any changes in school zoning lines. Elimination of a zoned school is a change in zoning lines.
In the past the UFT went to court to oppose zoned schools being closed without a CEC vote and won. It looks like the CEC is meeting later --- probably to try to force through a vote -- the CEC is split so that should be interesting and the press conf is right before that meeting. Sorry I can't be there.

Rumors that Farina has told people the school will remain open over her dead body. Farina believes in punishing people who resist the Farina-Borg.

Last night at the UFT Ex Bd meeting, MORE and New Action raised a reso regarding 145, motivated with great speeches from Mike Schirtzer (It's a shonda) and Marcus McArthur - one of the best speeches I have heard. (See minutes by Arthur: UFT Executive Board March 20, 2017--CPE1 in House, JHS 145 Reso Watered Down.)

JHS 145 teacher Jim Donohue has been in the forefront of the battle.
JHS 145 English Teacher James Donohue said James’ support is a huge shot in the arm for a grassroots campaign to keep the school open that is comprised of students, alumni, teachers, parents, elected officials, community groups, activists and the teachers’ union.

“We believe Mayor de Blasio and Education Department have a moral and legal obligation not to shutter JHS 145,” Donohue said. “Closing the school brings to mindthe Vietnam-era expression ‘We had to burn the village in order to save it.’ Surely, there are less devastating ways to help students than evicting them from their school and uprooting them. Surely, it is preferable to keep these vulnerable children in the place that they consider a home away from home - while providing crucial resources, like adequate staffing, that they unfortunately have been denied despite being dubbed a ‘Renewal School.’ ”
I posted videos from the March 6 JHS 145 hearing last night - Videos JHS 145 Hearing: Farina Closing 145 and handing it to Eva echos DeVos/Trump Ed Policy

View Jim's March 6 speech: How do you know when you're not important.
JHS 145 Hearing Jim Donohue 

The campaign to SAVE JHS 145 from being closed by the Department of Education announces a big step forward – and will have a press conference late this afternoon.

The campaign to keep 145 open has widespread support, including City Councilwoman Vanessa Gibson, state Assemblywoman Latoya Joyner, Community Board 4, the New Settlement Organization, the United Federation of Teachers, parents, students and alumni.

Supporters of 145 will be holding a press conference this afternoon before the local Community Education Council meets. The Panel for Educational Police is set to vote on proposed school closings Wednesday, March 22nd.
Press Conference

When: TODAY, Tuesday, March 21, 4:30 pm

Where: PS 28 
1861 Anthony Avenue
Bronx NY
in front of the school

What: JHS 145 is calling on the DOE to withdraw proposal to close the school. 
The District 9 CEC has not approved the DOE proposal, and the zoned school cannot legally be closed without their approval. 

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