Charter school parents in New York do not give in to bullies.
Last week, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio decided to kick four charter schools out of their building – leaving 700 students without a school next year. One of the schools, made up of predominantly low-income and minority students, is in the top performing one-percent of schools in math and top seven-percent in reading and writing in the entire state of New York. This event, along with cutting $210 million in charter school funding, are part of the Mayor’s concerted effort to curb charter school growth in New York City. Critics contend the Mayor is paying back the teachers’ unions for supporting his campaign. He certainly is not listening to parents or considering the impact on their children.
Less than a week after the Mayor’s proposals, 11,000 outraged student and parents traveled to the state capital of Albany yesterday to rally for charter schools. The charter supporters braved below-freezing temperatures to send a message to Mayor de Blasio – if you will not stand up for our students, we will find state leaders who will.
Luckily, they’ve found a leader in Governor Andrew Cuomo, who has vowed to ensure that “charter schools have the financial capacity, the physical space and government support to thrive and grow.”
Speaking to the 11,000 supporters, Cuomo put aside the politics that are shaping the education platform of Mayor de Blasio. “Education is not about the districts and not about the pensions and not about the unions and not about the lobbyists and not about the PR firms,” said Cuomo. “Education is about the student and the students come first.”
About the author
Adam Peshek @AdamPeshek
Adam Peshek is Managing Director of Opportunity Policy at ExcelinEd, where he provides strategic support to state leaders interested in developing, adopting, and implementing policies that increase educational options for children. He has provided expert testimony in more than a dozen state legislatures and is a frequent commentator on ESAs, school choice, and education policy across the country. He is also the is the co-editor of the first published volume on ESAs, Education Savings Accounts: The New Frontier in School Choice. Adam currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia and is a Senior Fellow with the Beacon Center of Tennessee.