The School Reform Commission is now deciding the fate of 39 charter school applications, the first such new proposals in seven years.
I'm livetweeting until the finish.
Today, the SRC decides the fate of 39 possible new charter schools.
The SRC is surely feeling intense pressure - powerful people on all sides are watching their moves today. On one hand, Gov. Wolf has said that he wants zero new charters approved. And on the other, Republicans in the House and Senate have urged the passage of many charters - between 16 and 27, House Speaker Mike Turzai (R., Allegheny) said. And while governors propose budgets, legislators get them passed.
State Sen. Vincent Hughes (D., Phila.) is the latest to weigh in. Hughes, in a letter sent to SRC Chairman Bill Green this morning, said that "adapting a full expansion of charters will not just cause the financial collapse of the School District, but it will cause the academic collapse of every student in both traditional and charter schools in Philadelphia."
Kristen Graham and Martha Woodall
There's major news afoot in the Philadelphia school landscape: Philadelphia School Partnership is offering up to $35 million over three years to clear the way for the School Reform Commission to approve new charter schools.
The money would pay for new charters for 14,000 Philadelphia students. Thirty-nine charter applications await the SRC, which could decide on them next week.
Mark Gleason, executive director of PSP, said the group is trying to "take the cost issue off the table for the district."
With an eye to the snowy forecast, Philadelphia School District officials have made the call to close schools early on Monday.
All schools will dismiss at noon. After-school activities are cancelled.
Auditions for the High School for Creative and Performing Arts scheduled for Monday are cancelled, and have been rescheduled for the next day school is in session.
Commonwealth Court judges have handed a win to the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, ruling that the School Reform Commission cannot throw out the teachers' union's contract and impose new terms.
The decision was confirmed by Jerry Jordan, PFT president, on Thursday morning.
Compared with big-city peers, the Philadelphia School District now spends less per pupil than almost any other education system in the country — even Detroit’s.
Philadelphia’s per-pupil pricetag last school year was $12,570 — the lowest of any comparable district except Memphis, Tampa and Dallas, the Pew Charitable Trusts concluded in a report released Thursday.
It's another busy day in Philadelphia School District land - on tap is an SRC meeting, a student die-in, and a five-year financial plan for the cash-strapped school system. Follow along as I livetweet...
U.S. Labor Secretary Thomas E. Perez on Thursday announced a $100 million competitive grant program - the largest in history, he said - that will go to expand apprenticeship programs.
Perez made the announcement in Philadelphia, where he touted a successful Philadelphia School District apprenticeship program that equips students to be Information Technology professionals - jobs that often land products of the program starting salaries of $50,000 or above.
"Apprenticeship is not only your ticket to the middle class," Perez said. "It's the other college."