**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE**
April 8, 2011
Contact Simone Hawkins at (212) 788-7081
Council Member Letitia James Opposes the NYC Department of Education’s Revised Proposal to Co-locate BEC in P.S. 9
“While New York City settles to the idea of a new schools chancellor, the Department of Education (DOE) continues on its wrath of mass co-locations. In December of 2010, the DOE released the Educational Impact Statement (EIS) proposing the phase-out of M.S. 571 - The Bergen Upper School and a re-siting and co-location of Brooklyn East Collegiate Charter School (BEC) in the 13K009 building in Prospect Heights. However, on March 31, 2011 New York Education Commissioner David Steiner annulled the Panel for Educational Policy (PEP) February vote to place Brooklyn East Collegiate Charter School inside the PS 9 building.
The Commissioner’s decision sides with seven parents who filed a lawsuit charging many oversights in the DOE’s proposal, including that it had not provided required details about the effect of the co-location on the use of common spaces. Although the Commissioner approved the parents’ petition, the decision still allows for the DOE to re-propose the co-location of BEC in the P.S. 9 building as long as they release a new plan that includes the missing information.
Without any delay, the DOE has released a revised EIS and revised BUP requesting for the co-location of BEC in the 13K009 building. This revised notice, which will be subject to a new vote by the PEP, provides information about a new unscheduled joint public hearing. The PEP is scheduled to vote on this Proposal May 18th, which will still allow for the re-siting/co-location this Fall.
P.S. 9 has achieved magnificent things and should be given an opportunity to expand. It is evident that the DOE will continue to advance their agenda and resultantly impede the possible growth and expansion of P.S. 9. As mentioned previously, I believe all co-locations and school closures should be suspended until a complete assessment of this impact on the school system has been made considering the absence of a fully appointed Chancellor. I will continue to stand with the families of P.S. 9 in opposition to this proposal.”