Sunday, August 31, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Parents, others filing complaint to stop school closings

In an attempt to halt the Philadelphia School District's school closing process, a group of parents and others say they are filing a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights.

Parents, others filing complaint to stop school closings

In an attempt to at least temporarily halt the Philadelphia School District's school closing process, a group of parents and others say they are filing a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights.  The parents, who include members of the community group ACTION UNITED, say that school closings disproportionately affect African American students.  

The group hopes to win a moratorium on school closings, and they want an investigation into the school closings and phase-outs that took effect this year, which they say were discriminatory.  Advocates for the group say that at six of the eight schools that closed or began the closing process, at least 13 percent more African American students are enrolled than district average.  They say that at seven of the eight schols, the white population is at least 11 percent below district average.

The district is currently in the beginning stages of a plan to close up to 40 schools this year.  Meetings on criteria for determining schools to be closed are now being held; a list of possible closures is expected in November, with final School Reform Commission approval next year.

Members of the group taking this action have scheduled a press conference outside the school district headquarters for tomorrow morning.

A school district spokesman said the district had not seen the complaint, but would have no comment on the pending litigation.

About this blog

Inquirer reporter Kristen Graham writes the Philly School Files blog, where she covers education in Philadelphia, both in and out of the classroom.

During the school year, you’ll frequently find her hosting live chats about the district on Philly.com.

Please do pass along the scoop about what’s going on at your Philadelphia public school; Kristen welcomes tips, story ideas and witty banter.


Kristen Graham Inquirer Staff Writer
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