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New York City Sued by Charter School Parents Over Space Sharing

A charter school is an example of alternative education. A charter school is a school which receives public funding but operates independently. The laws governing charter schools vary greatly from state to state. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has said charter schools had been singled out for preferential treatment by his predecessor, Michael Bloomberg, even though they serve only 5 percent of the city’s students.

Charter schools were targeted to be a major component of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2002. Over 500 new public charter schools have opened their doors in the 2011-12 school years, that is an estimated increase of 200,000 students nationwide. It has been reported that this year marks the largest single–year increase ever recorded in terms of the number of additional students attending charter schools.

Although the Bloomberg approach was less than perfect, the Bloomberg administration era of giving high-performing charters free space in public school buildings has, over all, benefited the city, bringing high quality public education to a lot of communities that lacked it.

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On Feb. 27 the Department of Education sent an e-mail announcing it had unilaterally decided to revoke Harlem Central’s location.

A charter school operated by Success Academy NYC, Harlem Central, has a group of 19 parents asking a federal judge in New York to grant an order blocking the city from terminating a space sharing agreement. Success Academy operates 18 Charter Schools in New York City, and according to the law suit the Harlem location is attended by 194 students.

According to Bloomberg News, New York City was sued by the charter school parents to persuade Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration to let their children’s academy, Success Academy NYC, share space in a local public school. The New York Times has reported that The de Blasio administration has reported that it will correct this problem by looking more closely at space issues.

Image credit: aaobserveronline.com

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