Charter backers march across Brooklyn Bridge

Charter backers march across Brooklyn Bridge

Posted: Updated:

KAREN MATTHEWS | AP

NEW YORK (AP) — Thousands of charter school parents, students and teachers marched across the Brooklyn Bridge Tuesday to send a message to front-running mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio, who has said he would charge rent to some charter school operators that now get free space in public school buildings.

"I'm a firm believer that we need to reward excellence, not punish it by having us pay rent for our schools," said Sulma Arzu-Brown, the mother of a fourth-grader at Girls Prep Bronx, an all-girls charter school.

About 70,000 of New York City's 1.1 million public school pupils currently attend charter schools, publicly funded schools that are independently run.

In addition to charging rent, De Blasio, a Democrat who is leading Republican Joe Lhota by 50 points in recent polls, favors a moratorium on forcing traditional public schools to share their buildings with charter schools.

The so-called co-locations of charter and traditional schools have often been contentious, with parents at the traditional schools complaining that the charter schools draw more than their share of resources.

De Blasio's spokesman said Tuesday that the candidate "will work with all our schools, but he believes that well-resourced charter networks should pay for the use of school space, as charter schools do across the country, and he'll put a moratorium on co-locations until we can better assess their impact."

Lhota, a strong charter school backer, said as he mingled with charter school parents outside City Hall, "We need more of them, we can't burden them with paying rent, we can't burden them with saying they can't locate or co-locate in a public school. We need to wrap our arms around the charter schools and really understand how important they are."

Marchers chanted "No rent!" as they marched from Brooklyn to City Hall. Organizers with Families for Excellent Schools said more than 10,000 people participated.

Some charter schools including the Success Academy chain founded by former City Council member Eva Moskowitz closed for the morning so students and teachers could participate.

Brooklyn charter school parent Christal Buxton told a news conference outside City Hall that she wanted "to stress to the people who represent us now and to those who will represent us in a few months our concerns regarding the education of our children."

She added, "I am marching today because we want parent choices to be respected and protected by the next mayoral administration."

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


  • Brooklyn NewsBrooklyn NewsMore>>

  • Dangerous rip currents at NJ, NY beaches

    Dangerous rip currents at NJ, NY beaches

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 4:54 PM EDT2014-08-27 20:54:07 GMT
    Several beaches on the New Jersey and New York coastlines are open to visitors but closed to swimming because of high surf and dangerous rip currents. The National Weather Service has issued a High Surf Advisory and Rip Current Statement for the area beaches because of the effects of Hurricane Cristobal, which is expected to track south and east of the Jersey shore through Thursday.
    Several beaches on the New Jersey and New York coastlines are open to visitors but closed to swimming because of high surf and dangerous rip currents. The National Weather Service has issued a High Surf Advisory and Rip Current Statement for the area beaches because of the effects of Hurricane Cristobal, which is expected to track south and east of the Jersey shore through Thursday.
  • Cuomo orders investigation into Time Warner outage

    Cuomo orders investigation into Time Warner outage

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 1:15 PM EDT2014-08-27 17:15:06 GMT
    Time Warner Cable suffered a nationwide outage primarily impacting its Internet service on Wednesday morning. More than 11 million customers were affected.  Several hours later, NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered an investigation into the outage. "I have directed the New York State Department of Public Service to investigate this outage as part of its review of Comcast's proposed merger with Time Warner," said Cuomo.
    Time Warner Cable suffered a nationwide outage primarily impacting its Internet service on Wednesday morning. More than 11 million customers were affected.  Several hours later, NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered an investigation into the outage. "I have directed the New York State Department of Public Service to investigate this outage as part of its review of Comcast's proposed merger with Time Warner," said Cuomo.
  • Mayor: NYC will learn from 2004 RNC 'mistakes'

    Mayor: NYC will learn from 2004 RNC 'mistakes'

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 6:35 AM EDT2014-08-27 10:35:46 GMT
    Brooklyn's final pitch to hold the 2016 Democratic national convention was centered on New York City's robust mass transit system -- and a pledge to learn "from the mistakes" from the last time the city hosted a presidential convention. The Republicans gathered in New York in 2004 to re-nominate President George W. Bush, choosing to meet in deep-blue Manhattan less than three years after the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
    Brooklyn's final pitch to hold the 2016 Democratic national convention was centered on New York City's robust mass transit system -- and a pledge to learn "from the mistakes" from the last time the city hosted a presidential convention. The Republicans gathered in New York in 2004 to re-nominate President George W. Bush, choosing to meet in deep-blue Manhattan less than three years after the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices