Earlier this year, bulldozers knocked over Bruce-Monroe Elementary school in the Petworth neighborhood of Washington D.C., with the promise from now-former Chancellor Michelle Rhee and soon-to-be-former Mayor Adrian Fenty that a brand-new school would be rebuilt. By 2011, parents and students were told, a new school would be ready for them.
But City Councilmembers keep postponing any rebuilding plans, while Bruce-Monroe students are stuck at an aging substitute school where they deal with mice, cockroaches, unhealthy air and constant sickness. Meanwhile, a developer has proposed building luxury condos and upscale shops on the site.
Tell DC leaders that a new Bruce-Monroe Elementary school must be built without delay on the former school site (3012 Georgia Ave NW) with sufficient public funding. The City Council, and Mayor Vincent Gray, must identify money in the city budget to immediately start construction on the new school, originally promised to be completed by the Fall of 2011.
The Parents and Friends of Bruce-Monroe have been struggling for years now to make the promise of getting their school rebuilt a reality. They are a true model of an involved parent base and serve as an inspiration to other parents and community members who are struggling to better their community.
They have been lied to and have been left out of the process and these wrongs need to be made right. Parents and community members are not just fighting for a physical building but are fighting to ensure that their children have a secure and bright future. We want to make sure that our community's future includes a great neighborhood school.
I urge you to do everything you can to make sure that this community's school is rebuilt. Please:
1. Secure the money ($20.3 million) that Michelle Rhee and Vincent Gray say is in the budget for rebuilding Bruce-Monroe is in a separate account. And find sufficient public funds for the remaining cost of getting the school built.
2. Rebuild Bruce-Monroe on its original site (3012 Georgia Avenue, NW)
3. Ensure that parents are involved in the decision making process of getting the school rebuilt. They are key stakeholders and need to be directly involved.