Emily Brown, a parent at PS 15 was told by DOE to stop blogging about the controversial move until after the hearings. Today in her blog, she describes how a bunch of people showed up last night with PAVE tee shirts, some of whom are really operators of other NYC charter schools.
Meanwhile, I’ve learned a little about the background of the charter school’s founder, Spencer Robertson. According to his wedding announcement in the NY Times, Spencer is a former program officer at the Tiger Foundation, founded by his father, the hedge-fund manager Julian Robertson. Julian Robertson’s current wealth is estimated to exceed $3 billion. (That’s Spencer on the right of the photo above, with his brothers and his mom, Josie.)
According to the PAVE charter school application,
In Year One PAVE anticipates total revenues of $1,780,819 and expenses of $1,481,626. The anticipated Year one surplus is $289,193.
· During the Start-Up phase and Year One, PAVE anticipates receipt of non per-pupil revenues from the Walton Family Foundation ($250,000), the City of
· There are no loans associated with the Year One budget.
· PAVE anticipates being located in a New York City Department of Education building. The Lead Applicant is engaged in conversations with the New York City Department of Education to secure such a space.
· The School has provided a contingency plan and budget for securing a facility over the term of the charter. If space in a Department of Education building is not a viable option, PAVE has identified a 20,000 square foot facility to lease located in the target community. The applicant asserts the potential value of the site includes: proximity to public transportation, public parks and playing fields. The proposed facility is also newly constructed.
So why doesn’t Joel Klein and others at DOE encourage Robertson to lease this facility, when he clearly can afford it, rather than give him valuable space for free in the PS 15 building?
I guess it’s for the same reason they insist on giving away precious public school space to Courtney Ross, the billionaire widow of Steve Ross, for her charter school, in the middle of one of the most crowded school districts in the entire city. Just because they can.