Charter School Coming to Cobble Hill

Eva Moskowitz plans to expand into the neighborhood.

Parents, you will soon have another local public school option.

The New York Times reported Thursday on big-time charter champion Eva Moskowitz's plans to open three schools in Brooklyn, one of which will be in Cobble Hill. The location is yet to be chosen, but the plan is to co-locate the charter within an existing District 15 school building.

The former City Councilmember and founder of a network of charter schools told The Times she expected "some noise" against the charter school, but the hope is that opening more schools in well-to-do neighborhoods will keep parents from choosing private schools for their kids.

"The city has already begun reaching out to neighborhood residents and leaders, continuing its push to turn charter schools into viable options for middle-class families whose neighborhood schools are too crowded or too weak to be attractive," wrote Fernanda Santos in The Times.

As has been widely reported, local highly regarded elementary schools  and  have experienced surging numbers, especially in the Kindergarten classes. But according to The Times article, other schools in District 15 have room to spare.

And so the plan, as is often the case with charter schools, is to co-locate the school within an already existing school in District 15. The Times article offers two possibilities: T, on Baltic and Court streets and and The Math and Science Exploratory School, on Dean Street and Third Avenue, which is actually Boerum Hill.

Last year, Global Studies received an F on its report card issued by the City Department of Education and was on the state’s list of lowest-performing schools — requiring the city to overhaul it. According to Gotham Schools, the new principal there is working hard to turn the school around, with the goal of attracting more students.

Co-location has been controversial, and Moskowitz told The Times it will likely be controversial here as well.

“There’s a deep anti-charter sentiment out there and I’m sure there will be opposition coming from that corner,” Moskowitz said. “But if you’re a parent with kids, you need a school, you’ve got to find an option. You can’t wait six months into the school year to find a spot for your child in kindergarten.”

Success Academy Cobble Hill will open next year, along with another school in Bedford-Stuyvesant and one in Williamsburg. The school will eventually serve students in grades K through 8. There will be 190 kindergarten and first-grade seats at Success Academy Cobble Hill, and eventually 600 students once all the grades have been introduced.

jjarvis October 08, 2011 at 03:34 PM
Brooklyn High School of the Arts and The Math and Science Exploratory School ALREADY share a building. Now they want to add yet another school population? The Math and Science Exploratory School (MS 447) is also home to one of the ONLY middle schools in New York City that has a specialized program for students with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD Nest). Last year, the DOE tried (and failed) to do the same thing and add a charter school to PS 32 which coincidentally ALSO has a very successful ASD Nest program. Is the DOE targeting Special Ed? Cause it looks like they are either trying to destroy the Nest program or they just don't know how it works, either way it's unacceptable.
rosemary spano October 12, 2011 at 05:08 PM
Really? Has anyone stopped to consider that putting this charter school in MS 447 will cause overcrowding and endanger the ASD program for Aspergers kids in MS 447? That program gives a slightly smaller class size to the ASD program, and enables bright kids with aspergers to succeed in an inclusion environment. Let's not jump on the charter school bandwagon for 447 quite yet!


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