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Success Academy CEO Eva Moskowitz

Success Academy CEO Eva Moskowitz

Alex Zimmerman

Foes to friends? Charter school leaders send letter saying ‘thank you’ to de Blasio for recent deal

It’s no secret that New York City’s charter sector and Mayor Bill de Blasio have not always seen eye to eye. But recently, as part of a deal to extend mayoral control, de Blasio gave the charter sector several concessions, including agreeing to reissue “zombie” charters and streamline the process for finding school space.

In a new letter, first reported by Politico, some of the city’s most prominent charter school leaders thanked the mayor and said they were “delighted” by his decision to work “more cooperatively” with the charter sector. The letter may be a sign of eased tension between the mayor and charters moving forward — or just a fleeting détente.

Full text of the letter below:

July 11, 2017 The Hon. Bill de Blasio Mayor, New York City Dear Mayor de Blasio: We are delighted that your administration has decided to work more cooperatively and collaboratively with the public charter school sector in New York City. Together, we are over 100,000 families strong. We are committed to a mission of social justice, a shared belief that every child in New York City deserves a great public school, regardless of race, zip code, or family income. This has led to outstanding results for children; last year 19 of the top 50 schools in New York City were public charter schools. This is why nearly 48,000 students are on waiting lists for charter schools, eager to access a high quality public education. We stand ready to work with you to do our part to meet this parent demand for more high quality public schools, by providing 100,000 new seats for high need families in the coming years. Our biggest challenge to date has been the ability to secure reasonable public space. Together, our schools currently have 27 open requests for public space that are waiting for a response from the City. Though we are not all seeking space at this time, we all believe that access to quality public space is crucial to providing families with quality school options. We ask that your administration let us know the status of these requests that will impact thousands of New York City families no later than August 15th. Mayor de Blasio, thank you for recognizing the incredible contribution public charter schools play in the educational justice and economic futures of our city’s children and the power of working together to serve all students. We look forward to a new chapter of support from you and your administration, and we appreciate your commitment to children, whether they attend district or public charter schools. Signed: Dacia Toll, Achievement First Ian Rowe, Public Prep Network Jacob Mnookin, Coney Island Prep Eva Moskowitz, Success Academies Jim Manly, KIPP NYC Brett Peiser, Uncommon Schools Lester Long, South Bronx Classical Steve Perry, Capital Preparatory Harlem Jamie Davidson, City School of the Arts Jeff Litt, Icahn Charter Schools Miriam Raccah, Bronx Charter School for the Arts Morty Ballen, Explore Charter Schools