Last week, Project Enroll Now promoted the open house at the Long Island High School for the Arts (LIHSA). They posted a promo flyer at one of the Malverne FB groups dedicated to education. (The post has been deleted since then). Project Enroll Now is a Malverne UFSD-based group. At the time of its founding, in 2004, its original purpose was to promote public schools located within the district. As the group members’ children are growing, they are calling parents to “enroll now” in the out-of-district magnet school. Certainly a shift in the group’s original mission.
The LIHSA was slated to be closed, as it operates with a $2M deficit/annually. The parents’ involvement and promise of private funding diverted the closing. The school needs to increase enrollment to help reduce the deficit. School districts pay a tuition for each student they enroll in the school (operated by BOCES). Malverne UFSD enrolls 15 students in the STEM program, representing about a third of the total number of students in that program. The LISHA offers other excellent programs and parents should not leave $10-15K (tuition fee per student) on the table when there is such a great opportunity.The Malverne district can afford it. It operates on $2M surplus. Perhaps, because the teachers have been out of contract for the past 4 years.
The parents in Project Enroll Now are asserting the interests of their children, as ALL parents are. Parents are ultimately responsible for the education of their children–not “experts” in Washington, DC; Albany; or district CEOs. Parents organize rallies in their districts and in front of offices of their representatives remembering that NYS still has a governor who, in his re-election campaign, promised to “break up” the public education. For example, “Protect Our Schools” (March of 2015 in Malverne) or “Paint Merrick Road Red” rallies in effort to secure funding for programs necessary to educate the “whole child.” Parents also voice their opposition to the GEA. Due to the GEA, the Malverne UFSD is short of $4M so far. It’s the money that was levied by the school district, but “redirected” for other purposes by Albany. And parents definitely don’t want to leave those funds behind despite it’s “public” money. They organize letter-writing campaigns to their representatives, create committees that share know-hows with similar committees in other districts, refuse unfunded, standardized tests that measure nothing, but cost a lot. ($400K annually for 1300 Malverne UFSD students).
The community welcomes the renewed activity of Project Enroll Now, the “parental networking organization in support of the Malverne school district” …and beyond. All public schools need every voice to stand loudly in opposition to the corporate interests that view children as “defective product,” if they don’t fit their corporate structure. Humans are their customers and they need to be reminded of that every day.
#gomules #ptchat #nyedchat