New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is wasting no time fulfilling a campaign promise to effectively stop charter school growth. Through new Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina, de Blasio is working to end charter school co-location policies and rent-free accommodations.
Farina makes two cases for ending the charter school co-location and rent-free practices. First, she argues that public schools need the space that charter are currently occupying free of rent. Second, she argues that removing charter schools from co-locating in public school buildings will also help free up space for de Blasio's proposed pre-kindergarten initiative.
As the New York Post argues out in an opinion article, these justifications are not the real motivation for dismantling New York City's charter school network. Rather, these power plays are about the unionized public schools versus the non-unionized charter schools:
New York City's seemingly endless charter-school debate has nothing to do with rental income - or even money, except tactically. Intrinsically, it has very little to do with classroom space, either.
It's about the fact that most charter schools aren't unionized, and that more often than not they work - embarrassing the unionists.
This makes them an existential threat to the perceived best interests of the United Federation of Teachers, which involve the jobs, pay and perks of its members - and never mind the kids. Now the union is calling the public-education shots, and it has decreed that the charter baby be drowned in the bathtub - and, again, never mind the kids.