(Guest Post by Matthew Ladner)
The story just keeps getting better in NYC as the chickens come home to roost. From Chalkbeat New York:
The new law requires the city to provide new charter schools with free space inside the city’s own buildings or public funding to cover rent in a private facility. The legislation is a rebuke from state lawmakers of de Blasio’s criticism of charter schools during the mayoral campaign and his early months in office.
One challenge the law poses for de Blasio is that it makes financial sense to keep charter schools in city buildings. If the city doesn’t provide space, the law provides for charters to receive an extra funding allowance for each student, which in 2015 would be $2,775, from the city.
Thirteen charter schools have already been approved to open that year, serving 2,000 students at first and 5,800 at full capacity. Private space for those schools would cost as much as $5 million in the 2015-16 school year and $16 million once they are all at capacity, based on enrollment estimates.
In addition, the city is planning to spend $5.4 million next year for three displaced Success Academy schools, which will have fewer than 500 students next year, to operate in Catholic school buildings.
So basically de Blasio is now hostage to a trumped-up grievance industry on co-locations that he helped to whip up but also financially on the hook for providing charter school facilities. The bill on this is only going to grow unless the Mayor would like to discover the virtues of co-location. Memo to Sith apprentices: think twice before attacking decentralized education reforms enjoying broad support.