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DOE Marks Total Of 26 Schools For The Chopping Block

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The city on Tuesday expanded its list of more schools headed for the chopping block.

The Department of Education says an additional seven schools have been selected to be
phased out.

Additionally, at two more schools they are proposing to phase out the middle schools -- sixth through eighth grades -- while keeping the remaining grades in the building. Those schools would be the Academy for Social Action: A College Board School in Manhattan and P.S. 156 Laurelton in Queens.

The Department of Education on Monday identified 17 under-performing schools it wants to close or phase out for poor performance.

The 26 proposed closings and phase-outs will need to be approved by the Panel For Educational Policy, which is mostly filled by mayoral appointees. It would also be the last set of proposed school structural changes for the Bloomberg administration which, for years, has worked towards making its mark on education reform.

The move is already coming under fire from the teachers union, which said in a statement, "The suggestion that the DOE has provided 'comprehensive supports' to the struggling schools on this list is absurd."

Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott stood by the proposals when he spoke to reporters today at a mentoring awards ceremony at Murray Hill Academy in Midtown.

"Our responsibility is to make sure there are quality options for our students, and while these schools are trying to do great things, they have reached the point where they need to be phased out," Walcott said. "But again, we have another of the process and then the final decisions will be made and announced in the very near future and they bring it to the panel for ratification."

At the High School of Graphic Communication Arts in Manhattan, which is facing a phase-out, students who spoke with NY1 had mixed feelings.

"It's a good environment for learning if you really want to get your work done, then yeah. Other than that then, I mean, you just come here to hang out. And that's not necessarily a good thing, right? Yeah, it's not a good thing at all," said one student.

"I'm getting a chance to learn. They're just not well put together, as a school," noted another student.

Six of the schools on the list were among 24 proposed for closure last year.

They were kept open by court order over the summer.

The proposed changes are expected to be voted on by the Panel for Educational Policy at its March meeting.

26 Proposed School Phase-Outs, Closures

Manhattan
High School of Graphic Communication Arts (phase out)
M.S. 45/S.T.A.R.S. Prep Academy (closure)
Choir Academy of Harlem (phase out)
Bread & Roses Integrated Arts High School (phase out)
J.H.S. 013 Jackie Robinson (phase out)
Academy for Social Action: A College Board School (Middle School phase out)

The Bronx
M.S. 203 (phase out)
Herbert H. Lehman High School (phase out)
P.S. 064 Pura Belpre (phase out)
Jonathan Levin High School for Media and Communications (phase out)
M.S. 142 John Philip Sousa (phase out)
Performance School (phase out)
P.S. 230 Dr Roland N. Patterson (phase out)
P.S. 050 Clara Barton (phase out)

Brooklyn
Freedom Academy High School (closure)
P.S. 167 The Parkway (phase out)
J.H.S. 166 George Gershwin (phase out)
J.H.S. 302 Rafael Cordero (phase out)
Sheepshead Bay High School (phase out)
General D. Chappie James Middle School of Science (phase out)
P.S. 174 Dumont (phase out)
P.S. 073 Thomas S. Boyland (phase out)

Queens
P.S. 140 Edward K Ellington (phase out)
Law, Government and Community Service High School (phase out)
P.S. 156 Laurelton (Middle School phase out)
Business, Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship High School (phase out)

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