Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Why the school closings cannot be legally approved tonight

The Dept. of Education's summaries and response to public comments on the proposed school closings has now been posted on the Panel for Educational Policy public comment webpage.

They remain hugely inadequate, and do not sufficiently respond to any of the issues highlighted in our critique, as regards the likely effect on class size or overcrowding; nor as regards the fiscal impact of these proposals.

They do reveal that at the public hearings, hundreds spoke in opposition to these proposals, and at most of them, not a single person spoke in support.

One more point. The PEP bylaws, in compliance with the new governance law, say the following:
"Following the public review process, the Secretary shall make available to the
public, including via the Panel’s official internet web site, an assessment of
the public comments concerning the item under consideration prior to 24 hours
before the Panel vote on such item. The Secretary shall conduct such assessment
in accordance with Education Law 2590-g(8)(c). "

Yet none of these summaries were posted on the DOE website until after 10 AM this morning; and by 1:45 PM only half were up.

So unless the Panel for Educational Panel vote occurs after 10 AM tomorrow morning, these proposals cannot legally be approved.