De Blasio Halts Charter Schools Approved Last Year


New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is blocking the opening or expansion of multiple charter schools that were approved last year.

Included were three Eva Moskowitz-run Success Academy schools, approved by former Mayor Mike Bloomberg, were to operate within existing public school buildings beginning in the fall.

The de Blasio administration, however, conducted a review that resulted in the charter schools being rolled back.

The New York Post reports:

The charter schools received approval last year from former Mayor Mike Bloomberg to operate rent-free in existing city buildings starting in the fall.

But at de Blasio’s behest, the Department of Education conducted a review and rolled back the "co-locations" in buildings that also house traditional public schools. […]

In total, Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina withdrew nine space sharing arrangements out of 45 reviewed. Six involved regular district public schools.

Moskowitz believes that the decision was retribution for her battles against the de Blasio administration and teacher unions, according to the Post.

Charter school advocates were taken aback by the lack of transparency behind the decision.

"It is hard to believe that an administration that constantly urges stakeholder engagement did not hold one meeting with affected families before making these recommendations," said CEO of the New York City Charter School Center James Merriman.

Union opponents of charter schools applauded the move.

"I’m glad the DOE has taken an important first step in vetoing some particularly troublesome pending co-locations," said United Federation of Teachers president Mike Mulgrew. "But the solution to Bloomberg’s destructive policies—including his two-minutes to-midnight attempt to lock in new co-locations on the new administration—is to give local schools and communities a real say on how their buildings are used."

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