Saturday, June 19, 2010

Another illegal move by DOE: expansion of Harlem Success Academy 3

The below letter from Rose Jimenez, member of the CEC in D4 in E. Harlem and head of the PTA at PS 375, (Mosaic Prep Academy) is addressed to Jonas Chartock, the head of the SUNY Charter Institute, as well as Pedro Noguera, head of the charter committee for SUNY, about the expansion of Harlem Success Academy 3 in the PS 375 building. This SUNY committee has to authorize any such expansion, and hearings on this matters are taking place Monday, June 21 at 141 E 111 ST at 5:30 PM; come by 5 PM if you want to speak.

Dear Mr. Chartock and Prof. Noguera:

As a parent at Mosaic Prep Academy (PS 375) and a member of the Community Education Council in District 4 in East Harlem, I do not understand how the SUNY Charter School Institute could consider allowing Harlem Success Academy 3, a school that is co-located in our building, to revise its charter to substantially expand from 363 students to 468 students next fall.

Any such expansion would obviously require a significant change in our school building’s utilization, without any of the public procedures outlined in the school governance law having been implemented.

As I’m sure you are aware, the governance law, A8903, requires that any significant change in public school utilization in New York City must be preceded by an Educational Impact Statement issued at least six months before the start of the new school year, as well as a joint hearing of the DOE, the CEC and the School Leadership Team at the affected school; and finally, a vote of the Panel for Educational Policy.

None of these events have occurred in this case, and in fact, it is too late for the DOE or SUNY to allow any expansion of the school to occur without warning so late in the school year, unless these additional students would attend classes elsewhere in a non-DOE building.

A SUNY hearing on the expansion and charter revision of Harlem Success Academy 3 is due to occur this Monday, June 21, at 5:30 PM.

I would very much like to hear from you before that time as to how SUNY could countenance such a potentially illegal expansion.

Yours sincerely,

Rose Jimenez, CEC District 4 and PS 375 Parent Association President


Ricochet said...

Trying to understand something. It sounds as though more than one "school" is physically in one building. How many "schools" can you have that way?

Sometimes we have 2 - a regular public school and then a magnet or IB school. But this sounds like independent management.

Leonie Haimson said...

Richochet: we have more than 400 schools that share space with other schools, in a process of co-location. More than two thirds of charters have been given space inside district public schools by the DOE, in an incredibly divisive process that has ripped communities apart and pitted parents against parents. Beware!

Anonymous said...


No, wait, it's the DOE. Suspend your sense of disbelief, reason, and legality.


Anonymous said...

Leonie: I'm just curious, have you ever been to HSA3, or any of the HSA schools?

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