On Wednesday, there was a Community Engagement meeting with the NYC Department of Education to address the overcrowding of P.S. 8 school. The Department of Education cut a full kindergarten class from P.S. 8 to alleviate the overcrowding for the first time in its history. State Senator Daniel Squadron, Councilmember Steve Levin and Assembly person Jo Anne Simon with the school PTA called the meeting at the Library of P.S. 287, 50 Navy Street in Brooklyn.
Brooklyn Bridge Parents provided a good recap of the meeting. According to the recap, DOE Chief Executive of Space Management Thomas Taratko “clarified that PS 8 never had the planning capacity for a 6th Kindergarten class and while the principal of the school had accommodated a 6th section during the last two years to allow all in-zone children to attend PS 8 the school has no capacity to continue to do so.”
Thomas Taratko insisted that the zone of PS 8 is too large and rezoning should have happened two years ago. “Rezoning is on the table and we are working on a rezoning proposal for the school year 2016/2017. We have a couple hundred available seats at PS 307 and PS 287.” A task force of parents, PTA members, school officials, elect officials, the DOE and the CEC will work on a rezoning proposal and solutions beyond the immediate rezoning. By November the rezoning committee of the CEC 13 could make their decision for next school year leaving more time for parents to plan accordingly.
Brooklyn Bridge Parents points out that with 1,841 new residential units coming to the PS 8 school zone between 2015 and 2019, the community needs to expect over 500 additional elementary-school-aged children. Rezoning will alleviate some unfilled seats in local schools at P.S. 307 and P.S. 287. However other solutions to accommodate all kids in the area will be needed.
(Images courtesy brooklynbridgeparents.com)