Council Holds Hearing On Impending School Closures Vote
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The City Council Education Committee held a hearing Tuesday on what to do with students whose schools are closing due to poor performance.
The Department of Education says 30 percent of the students at a school that's closing drop-out, and another 30 percent are discharged from the system.
Now advocates, union officials, and City Council members are calling on the DOE to produce more detailed statistics on what happens to students when their school is closed.
A senior at one the schools slated to close says his school has already cut several classes and this has an adverse affect on all the students.
"Kids have been discouraged once they see the small schools that are within our building receive better treatment. They have SMART Boards. They have newer computers, better equipment, more up-to-date lab equipment, whereas we still use things from the 1950s," said Jamaica High School Student Kevin Gonzalez. "I mean, our lab room has been there since the school opened, and still has the same equipment, whereas the other newer schools in our building have plasma TVs. So that students realize this, and they feel that they're not being treated the same. And it does affect them psychologically."
The DOE says the city wants to do what's best for every child, even if it means phasing out some schools.
The Panel for Education Policy is scheduled to vote next week on the city's plan to close 25 schools.