Education supporters ask de Blasio to add 25 schools
The Coalition for Educational Justice has released a report that urges New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio to reconsider his school budget for the coming school year to include $12.5 million for 25 new community schools. The new schools would be housed in existing buildings and would double as community centers for health care, adult education and job training.
During his mayoral campaign, de Blasio promised to open 100 new community schools and now education advocates say it is time to start making good on those words. The mayor’s proposed education budget for the 2014 – 2015 school year currently has no money allocated for community schools. It leads to the obvious speculation — how can 100 community schools be opened if there isn’t money to make good on even one in next year’s budget?
Opening the schools was a pivotal component to de Blasio’s campaign, along with his fervor to establish universal preschool and more after-school programs at the middle school level.
So far de Blasio has not done a whole lot when it comes to adding educational opportunities for New York City children. One of his first moves in office was to start charging rent to charter schools that had previously been given free access to city buildings. School choice advocates marched against the decision, but community school supporters cheered it.
This action, coupled with the newest lack of funding for community schools, points to the possibility that de Blasio was bigger on talk in his campaign than on action in his actual term.