The following just in as the New York State Legislature responds to the pressure of a $5 million advertising campaign demanding free space for privately-managed charters. Also, the billionaires behind this ad campaign have given handsome sums to Governor Cuomo and other key politicians. Cuomo has received at least $800,000 from the charter advocates. Under the legislation below, the charters are given the right to expand as much as they want, without paying rent, pushing out the public school that once was sited in the building. The charters can afford to pay their “CEO” half a million dollars, but they can’t pay the rent. They can pay millions for attack ads on television, but they can’t pay the rent. They can hire the politically-hot public relations firm SDK Knickerbocker more than $500,000 a year, but they can’t pay the rent. Their biggest boosters are billionaires, like Paul Tudor Jones, whose Robin Hood Foundation raises $80 million in a single night, but the charters can’t pay the rent. The charters are proving to be public parasites in New York City, invading the host and doing harm to the 94% of children who are not in charters.
One more point: When the Common Core tests were given a year ago, students in charter schools got the same average scores as students in public schools, even though the charters have few if any students with severe disabilities (and the public schools in poor neighborhoods have nearly 15%), and the charters typically have half as many English language learners. There were a few high-flying charter schools, but even more high-flying public schools. On average, there was no difference between the public schools and the charter schools.
Looks like the City is forced to offer either space or rent to new or expanding charter schools.
(E) IN A CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT IN A CITY HAVING A POPULATION OF ONE
24 MILLION OR MORE INHABITANTS, CHARTER SCHOOLS THAT FIRST COMMENCE
25 INSTRUCTION OR THAT REQUIRE ADDITIONAL SPACE DUE TO AN EXPANSION OF
26 GRADE LEVEL, PURSUANT TO THIS ARTICLE, APPROVED BY THEIR CHARTER ENTITY
27 FOR THE TWO THOUSAND FOURTEEN–TWO THOUSAND FIFTEEN SCHOOL YEAR OR THER-
28 EAFTER AND REQUEST CO-LOCATION IN A PUBLIC SCHOOL BUILDING SHALL BE
29 PROVIDED ACCESS TO FACILITIES PURSUANT TO THIS PARAGRAPH FOR SUCH CHAR-
30 TER SCHOOLS THAT FIRST COMMENCE INSTRUCTION OR THAT REQUIRE ADDITIONAL
31 SPACE DUE TO AN EXPANSION OF GRADE LEVEL, PURSUANT TO THIS ARTICLE,
32 APPROVED BY THEIR CHARTER ENTITY FOR THOSE GRADES NEWLY PROVIDED.
33 (1) NOTWITHSTANDING ANY OTHER PROVISION OF LAW TO THE CONTRARY, WITHIN
34 THE LATER OF (I) FIVE MONTHS AFTER A CHARTER SCHOOL’S WRITTEN REQUEST
35 FOR CO-LOCATION AND (II) THIRTY DAYS AFTER THE CHARTER SCHOOL’S CHARTER
36 IS APPROVED BY ITS CHARTER ENTITY, THE CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT SHALL
37 EITHER: (A) OFFER AT NO COST TO THE CHARTER SCHOOL A CO-LOCATION SITE IN
38 A PUBLIC SCHOOL BUILDING APPROVED BY THE BOARD OF EDUCATION AS PROVIDED
39 BY LAW, OR (B) OFFER THE CHARTER SCHOOL SPACE IN A PRIVATELY OWNED OR
40 OTHER PUBLICLY OWNED FACILITY AT THE EXPENSE OF THE CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT
41 AND AT NO COST TO THE CHARTER SCHOOL. THE SPACE MUST BE REASONABLE,
42 APPROPRIATE AND COMPARABLE AND IN THE COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT TO BE
43 SERVED BY THE CHARTER SCHOOL AND OTHERWISE IN REASONABLE PROXIMITY.