Press Release 4.22

**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, WEDNESDAY, APRIL 22, 2015**

Contact: Khan Shoieb, Khan@StuLoeser.com (347) 596-6389

FAMILIES ON CHARTER WAITLISTS CALL ON ALBANY TO RESPECT PARENT CHOICE AND LIFT DISCRIMINATORY CHARTER CAP IN POST-BUDGET SESSION

New York, NY – Dozens of parents gathered on the steps of City Hall Wednesday morning to demand that elected leaders in Albany respect parent choice and remove a charter cap limiting the availability of high-quality school options in their neighborhoods. Recounting personal stories of their children struggling in district schools and languishing on waitlists, parents demanded that state legislators returning to Albany for the post-budget legislative session make lifting the charter cap a key priority.

In each of the past two years, the number of families on charter school waitlists has reached 50,000. The charter cap, an arbitrary barrier to high-quality schools, has a discriminatory impact on black and Latino New Yorkers in low-income neighborhoods most in need of good schooling options.

With substantial changes in education in store for this year, including a potential extension of mayoral control, parents are relying on Albany to guarantee their right to choice of school–regardless of who occupies City Hall.

“Our choices and our children’s right to their future is just as worthy of respect as those who live on the Upper East Side, or in wealthier suburbs. How can you ignore tens of thousands of parents voting with their feet for these schools?” asked Marilyn Askew.

“With thousands of parents denied the choice of where to send their child this year, Albany needs to act swiftly to shatter the ceiling on charter schools this session,” said Tracia Gill Blackman.

“To our leaders in Albany: please don’t stand in the way of choice for parents–lift the charter cap! The charter cap disproportionately hurts the families who most need these options. We are starved for good school options, and need Albany to act immediately,” said Karen Martin.

“With wait lists for charter schools at record levels, Albany should act immediately to lift the the charter cap and give families high-quality school options,” said Jeremiah Kittredge, CEO of Families for Excellent Schools.

Families for Excellent Schools harnesses the power of families to advance policy and political changes that create and sustain excellent schools.

http://www.FamiliesForExcellentSchools.org

On Twitter at: @Fam4ExcSchools