Monday, December 05, 2011

Eva Moskowitz Hiring People To Get Signatures For Petition To Support Her "Cobble Hill Success Academy"?

New low in the debate over Eva Moskowitz's highly controversial charter school in District 15?
It would appear that the Success Academy Network is using some of its advertising budget to hire young people to get signatures for a petition in favor of its proposed charter in the Cobble Hill/ Boerum Hill neighborhood.  'Cobble Hill Success Academy' is to occupy space in the School for Global Studies and School for International Studies building at 293 - 284 Baltic Street.  The co-location caused outcry amongst many parents in the community, who don't want more charter schools. Instead , they want resources to go towards strengthening and improving existing public schools in the area.
A reader just wrote to tell me about her encounter with a paid petitioner in Carroll Gardens over the week-end.  She writes:
"There is a new sight to see as you stroll along Smith St or into Carroll Park.  Yesterday and today there is a young man at the corner of Smith & President collecting signatires from residents to request that a SA charter school be brought to District 15.  He admits that he is paid to do this (as you know, no public school in district 15 has funds to buy signatures).  He knows that SA's charter is for D14 & D13.  He states that these signatures will give SA the right to move into D15."
Another reader reported being approached by a man with a clipboard at the Bergen Street F train station late last week and on Friday afternoon, I was asked to "sign the petition for a new charter school" myself in front of Trader Joe's by the young man in the photos above. When I asked a few questions about the proposed charter, it became clear that he really did not know the first thing about it or about the controversy.
Of course, neighborhood parents against the charter have their own petition, but they don't have advertising dollars, like Moskowitz.
It strike me as just a bit disingenuous for the Success Academy to hire people to get signatures for them. How very businesslike...Perhaps if our own public schools had an advertisement budget, it wouldn't bother me as much.


Anonymous said...

Of course it's businesslike; it's a business!

Anonymous said...

Eva Moskowitz can certainly create a lot of extremely temporary jobs with her nearly two million dollar advertising budget. Alas, there is not much petition signatures can do if it turns out there is a violation of the charter law.

Every person who runs into one of these signature collectors should ask where the fifth graders are going to attend school.

Sadly, I predict this will pass the at the PEP meeting which is stacked with Bloomberg minions with the exception of perhaps one or two. It is Deputy Chancellor Marc Sternberg's job to close and co-locate schools. Everyone should Google "Marc Sternberg drinking" which will show just how little concern he and his DOE colleagues have for the students they purport to serve.

The DOE changed the PEP meeting location to Queens. There are school closures/co-locations on the agenda for the Bronx, Manhattan, and Brooklyn. They should find a location that is more convenient for the people that are most impacted by the agenda.

Anonymous said...

I too so someone (a different man than the one pictured here but same location) who looked much too young to have children, let alone school-age children. He asked me to sign a petition for a "new public school" in Carroll Gardens. When I confronted him about the inaccuracy of what he was saying, he didn't know what to say. I was shocked, I must admit, as I realized he must have been a paid canvasser.

Anonymous said...

Above poster is correct that the PEP will pass it (though we can always count on Patrick Sullivan to ask some hard questions and vote his own mind...too bad he is outnumbered). I hope that D15 parents are poring over the Educational Impact Statement, the Building Utilization Plan, the Charter application and all other docs to find the flaws in DOE's numbers/arguments/claims. It will be on those technical details that they might have a shot at getting the vote deferred or the proposal withdrawn.

Anonymous said...

Um, and the UFT is not spending $$$ to keep charters at bay?