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Saturday, May 17, 2008

District 2 blueprint

Check out this document (in pdf), sent late Friday to the members of the Community Education Council in D2, and prepared by DOE to deal with the problems of overcrowding at twelve District 2 schools.

It appears that rather than calling for the construction of new schools, it relies primarily on cutting back on variances, rezoning, and at least one case, busing 5th graders from the Tribeca area to other schools one mile or more away. It also appears to rely on several quite questionable assumptions.

District 2 parents, please take a look, forward it on, and if you can, put down your comments and/or critiques in written form on the blog. It is also important that you forward the document to parents, PTAs, and SLTs in the affected areas.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is incredibly frustrating that some of the solutions proposed in this report have negative impact not only on those students and parents directly affected by the overcrowding problem, but also those who are already in good schools or trying to get into a decent school.

I cannot believe that they are considering checking addresses of the current students and would remove them if the student does not live in the right zone. I think continuity and stability of academic environment is of great importance for success.

We still have schools in District 2 that are failing (according to DOE own criteria, such as grade F on the School Progress Report). Given the overcrowding problem and the solutions proposed, parents in such schools have no chance of getting a variance.

While the new schools are being build or the bad ones are being restructured, why not consider "a second shift" solution? I grew up in another country where I went to a public school from 12-5 during 4-6th grades because the school was overcrowded. It worked. We still had the same good teachers and the same curriculum. And the teachers were reimbursed accordingly.

The defensive approach DOE takes to many of the recent problems (funding cuts, gifted and talented program changes) and their lack of concern for the parents is discouraging.