Thursday, August 26, 2010

The Lo-Down: DOE and PS 94, Girls Prep

"Girls Prep Ruling: the DOE Responds:"
"Silver Calls Klein’s Girls Prep Decision “Blatant Abuse” of Emergency Powers.

As we reported last night (via Gotham Schools), the Department of Education has decided to go ahead with the Girls Prep expansion plan in spite of a ruling by the state education commissioner blocking the proposal. The commissioner, David Steiner, said the DOE failed to consult with parents from P.S. 94, one of two schools sharing space with Girls Prep in a building on East Houston Street.

DOE Chancellor Joel Klein signaled his intention to implement the original plan, invoking a section of state law that permits the DOE to act unilaterally when it is, “immediately necessary for the preservation of student health, safety or general welfare...”

My Comment:


The Chancellor pits parent against parent, family against family. This is unacceptable. No parent should be played this way. No matter if you are a parent of Girls Prep or PS 94.
Using “…immediately necessary for the preservation of student health, safety or general welfare…” doesn’t fly. If the Chancellor has the health and safety of children at heart then: Whose health? Whose welfare? Do the other children just not count? How do you justify taking vulnerable children out of their home-base school and treating them as less important? Is not parenting a child with autism challenge enough in this system?
No parent should be left scrambling for resources in a city as wealthy as this one. Vanity charter schools are not the answer. A cohesive public approach that allows for local autonomy just might be (and that could include charter schools).

Every parent and school official should read the Hunter College graduation speech by Justin Hudson
He writes, beautifully, of how a “good” education that excludes so many others is not a real victory for our society. And I would say maybe it’s not an education at all.

The arrogance of this astounds. Bring on the Disability Rights suits.

Update as of 8/26/2010. The DOE backed down and found a new location for the expanded classes for Girls Prep

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