Throughout New York City, students from Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade are learning firsthandabout “co-location,” the practice of two or more distinct schools existing in the same building and sharingspaces. The growth of co-location has driven the rapid increase in new schools in the City. The New York CityDepartment of Education (DOE) increased the number of new schools significantly during theadministration of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. In the six year period between 1996 and 2002 – the latterbeing the year Mayor Bloomberg first took office – the DOE opened 314 new schools.( 1 ) During theMayor’s first two terms from 2003 and 2009, the DOE opened 452 new schools. While the Mayor can credithis administration to all these new schools, these schools do not have their own buildings but located inexisting schools that are either being phased out or not utilizing every classroom all periods every day.All too often, co-location in New York City has led to the denial of parity and equity for all of the City’spublic schools students. The city has created hundreds of new schools stating that they are providing NYC families choice for theirchildren. There are many new schools with many themes. In buildings where there used to be one school,there can be up to four new schools. These are called campuses, a larger example of co-locations. Theseschools are provided with much support, new technology, new labs and often stipulate class sizerestrictions. Let's look at the downside of these co-locations.In many buildings the DOE pays for one to three extra administrations to run multiple schools, increasingthe costs to taxpayers. The inequity lies in the existing school giving up classrooms, student enrollment,and not receiving the extra support and amenities offered to the new school. Common spaces, such as theauditorium, gymnasium and cafeteria have to be shared between the schools. Other school spaces thatmay be affected by co-locations include cluster rooms, libraries, labs, and specialized spaces for specialeducation. If the co-location makes the school space more constricted within the facility, libraries, labs andcluster rooms may be converted into classroom space. In addition, classroom space may be sacrificed toaccommodate the incoming school, which could result in increased class sizes in the existing school insome cases. (2)
A moratorium on new co-locations until the following has occurred:1.The City must perform a comprehensive review of the processes and protocols currently in place inorder to make the system of co-location workable in New York.2.The New York City DOE needs to review and revise its procedures for measuring space withinschools.
A review of the existing school so no new school that co-locates would put the first school at adisadvantage to the students that attend there.
Any other necessary best practices can be evaluated and implemented.Once the above is addressed, decisions should then be based on a CEC vote and before a vote can betaken, the CEC shall solicit advice from the affected School Leadership Team(s), District Leadership Team,the district Presidents Council, and other community organizations in that community. In the case of high
Approved by CPAC