At a press conference this morning, parents and advocates announced a lawsuit that aims to prevent Success Academy charter school from moving into the School of Global Studies/School of International Studies on Court Street between Baltic and Douglass.
Parents at the press conference said they didn’t understand why their high school children should have to suffer larger class sizes and reduced access to the gymnasium and other issues caused by the influx of 200 or so kindergartners and first-graders beginning this September.
“My son should not lose out on valuable space and opportunities, just because the Success Charter Network does not play by the rules,” said Colleen Mingo, a parent at the School for International Studies.
Parents of kids in the NEST program at Carroll Gardens’ PS 32, a special and successful DOE program for kids with autism, are also highly concerned, as there is a small middle-school/high-school program in the Court and Baltic school building for kids with autism, and kids with severe retardation. The concern of current parents and teachers at 148 Baltic is that the three DOE schools currently in the building will get pushed out by the new public charter school, which was approved at the location for grades K-4 and has said it hopes to expand to grade 8.
The charter school was approved for the Baltic street location by the DOE in December, and by the State University of New York Charter Institute in January. Here’s an in-depth piece we did recently on the school: http://southbrooklynpost.com/2011/12/success-academy-charter-cobble-hll/. But of course there are many opponents to charters schools, including Diane Ravitch, a national educational advocate, who says they’re an attempt to privatize our school system.
More on the lawsuit to come, stay tuned!