Philadelphia Federation of Teachers president Jerry T. Jordan released the following statement regarding the plan:
This restructuring plan has nothing to do with raising student achievement. The district provided a business model, not a research-based plan for turning around or supporting schools.
By closing 64 schools and transferring more and more children out of publicly accountable, neighborhood schools and into charter, cyber-charter and private schools, the School District of Philadelphia is saying it is no longer wants to be in the business of educating children. It would rather manage a ‘portfolio’ than do the hard work my members do every day educating children.
This is a cynical, right-wing and market-driven plan to privatize public education, to force thousands of economically disadvantaged families to select from an under-funded hodge-podge of EMO- and charter-company-run schools and to convert thousands of professional and family-sustaining positions into low-paying, high-turnover jobs.
I find it ironic that the district chose Election Day to announce it is dismantling our public school system, which is the foundation of our democracy. Every person who cares about democracy and about educating economically disadvantaged children, children of color, immigrant children and children with special needs should stand up to the SRC and tell them our children and our schools aren’t for sale.
Everyone will have a chance to weigh in beginning next Tuesday, May 1, when there will be the first in a series of ublic hearings on the proposal. Stay tuned for more developments.
What do you think?
Photo Credit: Vincent J. Brown
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