The battle over charter schools and whether they should be allowed to use space in public school buildings free of charge is playing out in court, as some parents have filed a lawsuit against the Department of Education.
09/15/2011 09:43 PM
Parents File Lawsuit Against DOE Over Charter School Co-Locations
The battle over charter schools and whether they should be allowed to use space in public school buildings free of charge is playing out in court.
Parents filing a lawsuit against the Department of Education say that it’s illegally giving 100 charter schools free space in city public schools.
One parents’ group estimates that the city loses $100 million annually by not charging the charter schools rent.
“My biggest advocates are my children, and I have to advocate for them so I want to see changes made. Big changes made,” said one parent.
“Right now, basically they’re getting a free ride. That’s money that could be collected, and not only would it be able to add teachers into the classroom, but it would be able to add support services,” said another.
“The list of inequities is long as is our fight to redress them, and we are here today because we need to stop this free ride that’s occurring at the expense of our students,” said a third.
Attorneys for the city argue that district schools get facilities funding while charter schools don’t and that making charter schools pay rent would force the closure of some of the highest-performing schools in the city.
An affidavit filed by the DOE adds that there’s no extra cost for co-locating charter schools because students who attend them would likely attend public schools if the charter schools did not exist.