Helen Gym sent the following report. The parents at Steel Elementary School voted to remain a public school, despite an aggressive campaign to turn the school over to a charter chain. But the school’s advisory council voted 9-8 to hand the school over to privatization. The final decision will be made by the city’s School Reform Commission.

“Happy news for Monday morning!

“On May 1, 176 parents at Steel Elementary School – the last public school in Nicetown – voted on whether to remain a District public school or be turned over to the city’s largest charter operator, Mastery Charter Network. More than 70 percent of parents – 121 vs. 55 – voted to keep the school public. Mastery Charter Network did not even muster one-third of the popular parent vote, despite an aggressive year-long effort to claim Steel for itself. A botched School Advisory Council vote resulted in a split 9-8 vote in favor of the charter. At least two grievances have been filed against this vote. The School Reform Commission will make a final determination on the school May 29.

“Parents statements are below. A video about Steel is also below that:

http://parentsunitedphila.com/2014/05/02/steel-parents-win-decisive-vote-to-keep-school-public/

http://vimeo.com/92774451”