Students use the entrance for Success Academy and Opportunity Charity schools, both of which share space inside Harlem's P.S. 241, in New York on Dec. 20, 2013.
Bebeto Matthews/AP

Mayor de Blasio faces heat over charter school closures

Updated


New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is facing a lawsuit from a high-performing chain of public charter schools.

A week ago, de Blasio moved to keep three Success Academy charter schools from opening in city buildings; one of the three is already operating in Harlem and will be closed (deBlasio approved a handful to remain open). Parents, school-choice activists and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo are protesting de Blasio’s decision as anti-school choice. De Blasio says the charters in question drained space and resources from the existing schools. 

Around 70,000 of New York City’s 1.1 million school-age kids attend charter schools, which are publicly funded but independently operated. 

Success Academy serves 6,700 of those students, and in last year’s standardized reading and math tests, they outperformed their citywide peers dramatically: Roughly eight in ten Success Academy students passed the math exam, compared with three in ten students citywide, and nearly six in ten passed the reading exam, compared with just over a quarter of students in the city, according to the New York Times. 

More than three-quarters of the Success Academy student body comes from low-income households, while 11% are English language learners and 15% are special needs students. 

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Mayor de Blasio faces heat over charter school closures

Updated