Update: the BAR has been amended to a vote for a "preliminary approval of potential list" of 19 childcare classrooms that would be converted to "K-5" homerooms (meaning the Board is only giving tentative approval.) Huzzah!
end of update
I suggest you write to the Board because the BAR for this item on the Board's agenda for Wednesday's Board meeting has NO list, not an even preliminary one. Their address is
My own e-mail to them fleshes out my concerns:
Like most district-watchers, I am well-aware of the capacity issues in
the district. I note the BAR on the Board agenda for tomorrow night
that will address some of those issues, including conversion of "child
care" classrooms. But I have one BIG issue with this and that is - where is the list?
Even a preliminary list? Are you truly going to vote for, what is in
essence, is a blank okay for this? For example, would you take the
space from a Title One school where loss of on-site child care could be a
disaster for some parents?
I heard the Superintendent and Dr.
Herndon talk about this at the last Executive Committee meeting and I
understand that knowing exactly where they will need the space is
tough to discern. But two things.
1) I'm pretty sure staff has some idea where they need the space and they should tell you AND parents.
pretty sure that - in the end - a couple, if not several, of those
spaces will end up in the hands of the City's Pre-K program. You'll
be told, "Oh, we ran those numbers and didn't need all 19 so the NEXT
use for that space in our space pecking order is pre-k." Because when
Dr. Herdon was directly asked about this, he said he "was not aware and
didn't know" if there were any pre-k plans.
What? Facilities isn't working with Enrollment AND Early Learning on what kids get put where?
well, the cost in the BAR for those classrooms is about $1.6M for 19
rooms. That comes out to about $88K a classroom. That seems pretty
high for rooms that are already built to serve K-5 kids. Unless you
needed more money to convert them to pre-K use.
You can either
take staff's word on this, both that they need all 19 spaces (without
naming any) AND that they don't know will end up as pre-Ks, but I wish
you wouldn't. I wish that you would strike this part of the BAR until
you see some locations on paper and ask Dr. Herdon to make sure that
these programs are not being closed for Pre-Ks.