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RELEASE: 200 New York City Charter School Parents Travel to Albany to Advocate for Educational Excellence and School Choice

**For Immediate Release January 15, 2020**

Contact:  Liz Baker, 646-902-4200 [email protected]

 Ann Powell, 646-894-6407 [email protected]org


Parents from all 45 Success Academy Schools, Public Prep Network, and Classical Charter Schools Travel for Albany Day of Action Albany, NY — Yesterday, 200 charter school parents traveled to Albany from New York City to speak out about the need for educational excellence and the right to choose schools that are the best fit for their children. Parents from all 45 Success Academy schools traveled with parents from Public Prep Network and Classical Charter Schools for the Albany Day of Action. Before meeting with their elected representatives, parents gathered on the steps of the New York State Capitol building and heard from elected champions of public charter schools, Senator Kevin S. Parker,  Senator James Sanders Jr., and Assembly Member Victor M. Pichardo, who spoke about the importance of their advocacy work and the potential of New York City’s public charter sector. “My son Franlo has achieved so much at Success Academy. He is reading above grade level and loves going to school every day, despite the odds against him as a special education scholar,” said Lody Lambert, parent of a scholar at Success Academy Cobble Hill, as she introduced Senator Parker, her elected representative, to the group. “I share your values in putting our children first, putting their education first, and making sure we fully fund education across all of the different systems,” Senator Kevin S. Parker told parents at the Capitol. "We need experimentation in education... When something is working, we need to be bold enough to say, 'You know what? It's working!' One of the key reasons why it works is because there are parents that are insistent that it will work,” said Senator James Sanders Jr.  “I have visited schools across my district — traditional public, charter, and parochial schools — and my number one concern is that every child sitting in a classroom in New York City has the opportunity to succeed,” said Assembly Member Victor M. Pichardo to the group of public charter school parents. “My job as a legislator is to support that child and that parent, and make sure that they have the opportunity to succeed. There are no do-overs.” Parents went on to meet with their elected officials in their Albany offices to talk about their children’s educational experiences and advocate for educational equity. Public charter schools in New York City currently serve more than 126,400 students each year — approximately 11% of the city’s public school students. In grades 3-8, NYC charter schools have consistently outperformed traditional public schools on state exams, with 57% passing in ELA compared to 47% at district schools, and 63% passing math vs. 46% for the district. Recent reports also show that charter school graduates are finishing college at higher rates than their district peers. Last year, there were 81,300 applicants for 33,000 public charter school seats, leaving about 48,000 children on charter school waitlists. New York City district schools are spending $21,176 per general education student in 2019-20 compared to the $16,343 in public funding the city’s charter school students receive. This means that charter schools — despite enrolling primarily low-income students of color, including more than one in five of the city’s Black students — face a funding gap of $4,833 per child. ###


Founded in 2006, Success Academy Charter Schools are free public K-12 schools open to all children in the state through a random lottery. With 45 schools across Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens, Success Academy enrolls 18,000 students, primarily children of color from low-income households in disadvantaged neighborhoods: 74% receive free or reduced-price lunch, 94% are students of color, 16% have disabilities, and 8% are English language learners. Success Academy schools received more than 17,000 applications for about 4,000 open seats for the 2019-20 academic year.

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