A group of Brownsville parents and children rallied outside of P.S. 150 last week to demand that the New York City Department of Education bring high quality, high performing schools to a neighborhood that desperately needs them. A group of 20 parents, children, and community members from the StudentsFirstNY Brownsville Chapter peacefully assembled across the street from P.S. 150 in front of the Seth Low Houses.
Chapter member Aaron Hinton led the crowd with chants demanding that the DOE bring higher quality schools into Brownsville and within minutes the street was echoing with shouts like “Hey, hey. Ho, ho. Failing schools have got to go,” and “2, 4, 6, 8, we want teachers who are great.”
The parents and community members are concerned with the quality of teachers in the school, as well as the lack of good choices for the recently de-zoned District 23. With only 24.2% of students proficient in English and 38.5% performing math on grade level at the school, parents are desperate for change and the community is upset that P.S. 150 has been consistently failing their children.
Within minutes of the chants starting, the parent coordinator for P.S. 150 came outside to see why we were assembled across from the school. She explained that the school is improving, but our parents and community members were not convinced – the test scores don’t lie. The parent coordinator invited us to speak at community meetings and offered us a tour of the school at a later date.
The rally lasted about 30 minutes and the parents left excited, energized and empowered. After getting a taste for protesting, some wanted to know when the next one was scheduled. We agreed that the next rally will be bigger, better and louder. We need to continue to call attention to schools that are failing our children. We need to keep demanding from the DOE that all schools should have quality teachers. Our work will not stop until all children across New York have access to a quality education.