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>>

  • Christians around world mark Good Friday

    Christians around world mark Good Friday

    Friday, April 18 2014 1:34 PM EDT2014-04-18 17:34:50 GMT
    From the Holy Land to the streets of New York City, Christians have commemorated the crucifixion of Jesus Christ in Good Friday prayers and processions. Thousands of Christian pilgrims filled the cobblestone alleyways of the Old City on Friday along the Via Dolorosa, Latin for the "Way of Suffering." In NYC, Timothy Cardinal Dolan and Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio lead followers across the Brooklyn Bridge.
    From the Holy Land to the streets of New York City, Christians have commemorated the crucifixion of Jesus Christ in Good Friday prayers and processions. Thousands of Christian pilgrims filled the cobblestone alleyways of the Old City on Friday along the Via Dolorosa, Latin for the "Way of Suffering." In NYC, Timothy Cardinal Dolan and Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio lead followers across the Brooklyn Bridge.
  • Wineries flourish in Brooklyn

    Wineries flourish in Brooklyn

    Thursday, April 17 2014 10:34 PM EDT2014-04-18 02:34:04 GMT
    Hundreds of oak barrels of wine are all stacked in one room. You might think this is Napa, California. But it's not. It's the Brooklyn Winery, located in what was once an old pickle factory in Williamsburg. Refrigerated grapes are brought in from the North Fork of Long Island and from the Finger Lakes and then aged in barrels. These days urban wineries are becoming more popular, and they're popping up all over the borough.
    Hundreds of oak barrels of wine are all stacked in one room. You might think this is Napa, California. But it's not. It's the Brooklyn Winery, located in what was once an old pickle factory in Williamsburg. Refrigerated grapes are brought in from the North Fork of Long Island and from the Finger Lakes and then aged in barrels. These days urban wineries are becoming more popular, and they're popping up all over the borough.
  • NYC to overhaul Superstorm Sandy rebuilding program

    NYC to overhaul Superstorm Sandy rebuilding program

    Thursday, April 17 2014 9:30 PM EDT2014-04-18 01:30:41 GMT
    Mayor Bill de Blasio unveiled a sweeping report Thursday that examined New York City's recovery progress from Superstorm Sandy and promised to reform a much-maligned program that was supposed to rebuild wrecked homes. Speaking to about 50 homeowners, officials and community leaders in a storm-battered Staten Island neighborhood, the mayor said the city is aiming to start rebuilding an ambitious 500 homes through its federally funded Build-It-Back program.
    Mayor Bill de Blasio unveiled a sweeping report Thursday that examined New York City's recovery progress from Superstorm Sandy and promised to reform a much-maligned program that was supposed to rebuild wrecked homes. Speaking to about 50 homeowners, officials and community leaders in a storm-battered Staten Island neighborhood, the mayor said the city is aiming to start rebuilding an ambitious 500 homes through its federally funded Build-It-Back program.
Powered by WorldNow

KTBC FOX 7
119 East 10th Street
Austin, TX 78701

Phone: (512) 476-7777
Fax: (512) 495-7001

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices