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P.S. 9 among six schools to start sharing space with charters

A contentious plan to move a charter middle school into Brooklyn’s P.S. 9 was one of six co-locations approved at last night’s school board meeting.

P.S. 9 parents came to the Panel for Educational Policy meeting with a plan of attack against the city’s proposal to move Brooklyn East Collegiate Charter School into the building. One by one, parents took their allotted time to point out specific aspects of the plan that they said were impractical for both schools. They also drew attention to P.S. 9’s own bid to expand into a middle school.

Their expansion plan, however, was not up for consideration and the panel, which has never rejected a co-location proposal, voted to move forward with the space-sharing plan.

Marc Sternberg, the Department of Education’s deputy chancellor for portfolio planning, argued that Uncommon Schools, the charter organization that runs Brooklyn East Collegiate, has a strong record with middle schools.

The vote had the most dissenters of the night, with four panel members voting no, and Chancellor Dennis Walcott suggested that P.S. 9’s middle school bid is not completely off the table. “I’m firmly committed to considering a P.S. 9 expansion,” he said.

While the P.S. 9 vote was the most divided, some panel members also voted against the placement of Democracy Prep charter school in M.S. 197 in Manhattan. Panel members unanimously approved KIPP STAR in Manhattan and VOICE in Queens.

The expansions, with vote counts, were:

  • Metropolitan Lighthouse into X093: 10 yes – 0 no – 1 abstaining
  • Brooklyn East Collegiate into K009: 7-4-0
  • Explore Charter School into K002: 9-0-2
  • Democracy Prep into M197: 7-3-1
  • KIPP STAR into M115: 11-0-0
  • VOICE into Q111: 11-0-0

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