Keep Eastern Academy Charter School Open!

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SAVE THE ACADEMY: Many of you are aware of the Charter School Office and School Reform Commission’s attempt to close our school, Eastern Academy Charter School. Many of you have asked how you can help. In addition to prayers (which are definitely needed), we need you to make public comments in support of the school. The work we do for our young people, under the leadership of CEO and Principal, Omar Barlow, is far too important not to fight.

We are grateful to see the outpouring of support from the local community, as well as our political leaders.  Like us, our supporters believe that the Charter School’s Office campaign to extinguish our school is arbitrary, unreasonable, and capricious.

How You Can Take Action Before January 19th: Send your public comments to: src@philasd.org and obarlow@easternacademycs.org.

You can either create your own letter of support and send to the emails above or sign our petition below stating your support for our school:

“I am in full support of the work being done on behalf of students and families at Eastern Academy Charter School (7-12). This is one of the only early colleges and passion based schools in the city of Philadelphia. Students at this school continue to take college courses and earn admission to colleges around the country. In addition, students are learning how to discover their passion and purpose for life. And equally important, the students are learning in a safe, community-based environment. The Academy’s holistic approach to education must continue in the city of Philadelphia. It is a viable and much needed option for students and families. Eastern Academy Charter School’s charter must be renewed.”

After 13 hearing dates between October and December 2017 our legal team rested our case in strong confidence that a strong record was made that:

  1. Eastern Academy Charter did not violate any provision of the public school code
  2. There is no basis, whatsoever, in the law for the analysis conducted by the Charter School’s Office through which and upon which the SRC resolution for non-renewal rests.
  3. The arbitrary, legally ungrounded processes by which the Charter School’s Office sifted through charters in the 11th hour of their charter agreements not only violated the charter of Eastern University but also violated its due process rights protected by the Pennsylvania and United States Constitutions
  4. Eastern Academy Charter has had amazing success in delivering an educational program and climate far superior to the fearsome, violence ridden, failures that are the School District Schools.
  5. In all of our graduating classes – 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 & 2017 over 97 percent accepted to colleges and universities; the school has a 63% college matriculation rate.
  6. Since 2012, students have taken over 150 college courses for credit at both Eastern University and Community College of Philadelphia. Students are graduating from high school having earned college credit, which in some cases changes their status when they attend college.

Further evidence of the arbitrary, unreasonable and capricious nature of these proceedings include:

  1. Employees of the school district admitted that they invented the methodology upon which they judged charter schools for closure, and that they invented it after they collected all the data they used to assess charters for non-renewal.
  2. The Charter School’s Office compared Eastern Academy Charter School to a “peer group” of “district schools” that was falsely inflated with scores derived from special admission magnet schools.  This statistical manipulation was sold to the School Reform Commission without informing them of the same.
  3. Numerous other “shortcuts” and false allegations were also exposed during the hearing such as when the basis of classroom observation data promulgated by the Charter School’s Office turned out to be a 10-15 minute visit on one day of the school year by persons without teaching certificates.

The hearings concluded on December 20, 2017 and were to be followed by 30 days of public comment which commenced on December 20, 2017.  The public comment period will conclude at 11:59 am on Friday, January 19, 2018.

While the hearings have concluded, THE FIGHT IS NOT OVER.  Our school is NOT CLOSING. We need YOU! We need our parents, students, supporters and concerned Philadelphians to stand with us in the fight to SAVE THE ACADEMY!

TAKE ACTION NOW AND SIGN OUR PETITION!
If you agree that Eastern Academy Charter School must remain open to continue providing Philadelphia students with a high quality and early college educational experience. Please sign our petition asking the School Reform Commission not to vote to close Eastern Academy Charter School.



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