- Dr. Hazel DukesPresident, NAACP New York State Conference
Urge the NAACP: Drop The Lawsuit That Will Limit Access to Quality NYC Public Schools
The United Federation of Teachers (UFT) and the NAACP of New York recently filed a lawsuit that aims to close or prevent new enrollment at 19 public charter schools in NYC. If the case is successful, thousands of NYC students who otherwise would have an opportunity at a great education will be relegated to failing schools.
Every child deserves to attend a great school, regardless of their zip code. In New York City, public charter schools -- including ones operated by KIPP, Uncommon Schools, Harlem Children’s Zone, and Success Charter Network -- enable tens of thousands of kids in the most disadvantaged neighborhoods to attend great schools. While public, these schools operate independently from the district and can offer innovative programs, such as longer school days, to meet the needs of the kids they serve.
The UFT and the NAACP want to close some of these schools and prevent others from enrolling new children this fall, but thousands of kids are counting on these schools to have a chance at a good education. Denying New York City kids that opportunity is unacceptable.
It is baffling that the NAACP -- who has fought tirelessly for the rights of all students to receive a quality education -- would participate in this harmful action. Please take a moment to email the President of the New York State Conference of NY and urge the organization to drop the suit and allow NYC kids access to more quality schools.
- President, NAACP New York State Conference
Dr. Hazel Dukes
I'm writing to you today about a serious problem facing thousands of New York City families who may not be able to enroll their children in quality public schools next fall.
As President of one of the nation's oldest and most respected civil rights organizations, you are in a unique position to help.
I was perplexed to see that the NY State Conference of the NAACP is a plaintiff in a lawsuit aiming to close or prevent new enrollment at 19 public charter schools in New York City. If your case is successful, thousands of students who otherwise would have an opportunity at a great education will be relegated to failing schools.
Your organization has led the desegregation battles that changed our nation’s schools in the second half of the last century, including the landmark victory in Brown vs. Board of Education in 1954. The Brown decision inspired the marches and demonstrations of the civil rights movement, and led to the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, and the Fair Housing Act of 1968.
The fight to ensure that all children have access to quality public schools has been at the very core of the NAACP’s crucial and commendable work.
That is why it is surprising to see the NY State Conference of the NAACP listed as a plaintiff in a lawsuit seeking to block our children’s access to better schools.
Considering the NAACP’s proud history of protecting and advancing the interests of all students, I respectfully request the swift withdrawal of the NAACP as one of the plaintiffs in this case.
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