NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The crowd was loud and riled up inside Brooklyn Technical High School on Thursday night — mostly protesting a plan to close or partially close 23 New York City schools.
However, in the end, the Panel for Educational Policy voted to close 18 schools and eliminate the middle school grades at five others, which are considered failing.
Chaos erupted as a defiant crowd rallied inside Brooklyn Tech. Hundreds packed the auditorium trying to block the vote. There were parents, students and members of “Occupy the Department of Education” at the school. They said Mayor Michael Bloomberg should be fixing the city’s schools, not closing them, 1010 WINS’ Eileen Lehpamer reported.
1010 WINS’ Eileen Lehpamer reports
“I’m angry and I’m frustrated. I am afraid for the future of my child’s life,” said one mother at the hearing.
“Do not close the schools — Let Mr. Bloomberg know…Our schools [are] for education, not to make money,” added parent Jose Ferruzola.
The panel, controlled by Mayor Bloomberg, struggled to hear public comments over the booming chants — some led by members of the group calling themselves Occupy the Department of Education, CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez reported.
Extra police were on hand in case the crowd got out of control.
Earlier, hundreds marched in protest outside the high school. Though clearly outnumbered, some parents like Frank Manning said closing the schools is the right move.
“If we continue to let these schools to stay open when they’re failing, then we’re not going to get nowhere. Our kids are always going to be left out and the minority of groups will have nothing in the future,” he said.
“It’s time to give the children of New York City a chance to succeed by shutting down the drop out factories,” parent Bill Weeks added.
The following schools will be phased out and closed:
- Gateway School For Environmental Research and Technology
- Jane Addams High School For Academic Careers
- Samuel Gompers Career And Technical Education High School
- Grace Dodge Career And Technical Education High School
- Aspire Preparatory Middle School
- P.S. 019 Roberto Clemente
- General D. Chappie James Elementary School of Science
- International Arts Business School
- Satellite Three
- Middle School For The Arts
- J.H.S. 296 The Anna Gonzalez Community School
- P.S. 22
- Academy Of Business And Community Development
- Legacy School For Integrated Studies
- Manhattan Theatre Lab High School
- Washington Irving High School
- P.S. 215 Lucretia Mott
- P.S. 014 Cornelius Vanderbilt
These schools will have their middle school grades eliminated:
- Academy for Scholarship and Entrepreneurship
- P.S. 298 Betty Shabazz
- Frederick Douglass Academy IV
- PS 161 The Crown
- Brooklyn Collegiate: A College Board School