Supporters of public education speak before the School Reform Commission March 15, 2018

Click on the picture above to view all videos of supporters of public education speaking before the SRC meeting of March 15, 2018.

Move slider to timestamps to view individual speakers.
Northeast High Schools students 0:00
Shavya Subba, Furness student 5:25
Tiffany Lorch, teacher, Furness 9:14
Dwayne Ming, Parent, Family Involvement 12:40
Nancy Anderson, former librarian libraries and librarians 17:23
Lisa Haver, APPS member 20:38
Lynda Rubin, APPS memer 23:25
Barbara Dowdall, APPS member 26:40
Cheri Micheau, APPS member 30:14
SRC resolutions vote 33:30

The video concludes with the SRC discussion and vote on resolutions.

Note: The SRC places media on row 2 in the auditorium which allowed only filming speakers from the side and frequent visual interruption from the audience. We have protested these filming conditions to no avail.

These are transcripts of some of the testimony to the SRC. Transcripts are listed in the order they were given at the SRC meeting.

Shavya Subba cropped

Click the picture to read the transcript of Shavya Subba’s testimony. To watch her testimony move the slider 5:25.

Tiffany Lorch 2

Click the picture to read the transcript of Tiffany Lorch’s testimony. To watch her testimony move the slider to 9:14.

Lisa Haver

Click the picture to read the transcript of Lisa Haver’s testimony. To watch her testimony move the slider to 20:38.

Linda Rubin

Click the picture to read the transcript of Lynda Rubin’s testimony. To watch her testimony move the slider to 23:25.

Barbara Dowdall 2

Click the picture to read the transcript of Barbara Dowdall’s testimony. To watch her testimony move the slider to 26:40.

Cheri Micheau

Click the picture to read the transcript of Cheryl Micheau’s testimony. To watch her testimony move the slider to 30:14.

Click here to return to transcripts from the March 15, 2018 SRC meeting.

APPS sends a letter to Governor Wolf asking for the removal of Commissioner Green from the SRC for violation of the School Code

Wolf : Green

Last week, APPS co-founders Lisa Haver and Karel Kilimnik sent this letter to Governor Wolf. APPS asked the Governor to enforce the official school code, which clearly states that no sitting SRC commissioner may “seek or hold a position as any other public official”.  The Governor should enforce that law. He should ask Green to step down.  If Green does not, he should take steps to remove him.

All For Phila Public Schools

Governor Tom Wolf
225 Main Capitol Building
Harrisburg, PA  17120

 Dear Governor Wolf:

 On March 3, 2018 SRC Commissioner Bill Green filed federal paperwork to challenge U.S. Rep. Brendan Boyle in the 2018 Democratic primary, and he is currently circulating nominating petitions.

 Section(6) Section 696 (b)(6) of the Public School Code of 1949, as amended, states:

No commission member may, while in the service of the School Reform Commission, seek or hold a position as any other public official within this Commonwealth or as an officer of a political party.

 The law is clear: no one, including Mr. Green, can serve on the SRC while seeking public office. There is no question that a person serving in the US Congress is a public official.

 On behalf of the members of the Alliance for Philadelphia Schools, we ask that you immediately remove Commissioner Green from the SRC.

Lisa Haver
Karel Kilimnik
Co-founders, Alliance for Philadelphia Public Schools

For Governor Wolf’s response to the APPS letter see

Gov. Wolf: Bill Green can’t run for Congress | Clout – The Philadelphia Inquirer

Eyes on the SRC:  March 15, 2018


by Karel Kilimnik
March 12, 2018

Reading about the many recent school shootings has been heartbreaking. School culture has changed so that students today have grown up with metal detectors, school police officers, and lockdowns. Resolution A-4 (Operating Budget: $500,000 Contracts with AstroPhysics, Autoclear, and Ceia – Weapons Screening Equipment and Supplies) tells a sad tale of what has become normal in so many of our schools. Veteran teacher Kristin Luebbert described a lockdown drill at her school in the Philadelphia Inquirer:

Hearing the signal while in the hall with her students, she quickly shepherded them back into the room, plastered the windows with paper and sent the children to the back. Turning around she saw her students arming themselves with scissors, a heavy-duty stapler, and a bottle of Windex.  They told her they were prepared to defend themselves and her.

Edu-vendors continue to prosper at the expense of our students. Carnegie Learning (B-3) siphons off another $3 million as the District extends their contract to “provide professional development services to approximately 1500 K-8 and Algebra I teachers in support of the District’s annual summer mathematics initiative (2018 Summer Math Institute).”

Carnegie Learning traces its roots back to the 1980’s, when researchers at Carnegie Mellon University developed an “intelligent” math tutoring system. (Carnegie Learning spun out as an independent company in 1998, and its ownership has changed hands several times between private equity groups and other investors.)

Other investors, thereby blurring the lines of accountability and transparency, routinely gobble these private companies up. They are accountable to their investors—not the public.

In January, APPS members submitted questions to the SRC about the resolution approving the sale of the former Ada Lewis Middle School in East Germantown. This meeting’s Resolution A-10 reflects a modification to the sale. How this will affect the community is unknown. The January resolution description provided little information. In our analysis of that Resolution, we share the details we were given at that SRC meeting.  We need to keep in mind that Dr. Hite and Mayor Kenney are united in their intention to close more neighborhood schools.   District schools receive no dispensation and have no pathway to appeal any decision by the Superintendent or the SRC to close them down. Five years ago, students, parents, and teachers in twenty-four public schools found they had no standing in the fight to save their own schools. Their stories were heartbreaking but caused no change in the decision. The state’s charter law, on the other hand, guarantees an extensive legal process for any charter facing closure, effectively keeping the school open for many years.

Drexel University (A-18) was chosen to manage the federal ProSPER grant whose origins lie to the North in Harlem.  ProSPER represents the Obama Administration’s attempt to replicate the Harlem Children’s Zone, a private non-profit with several charter schools, preschool programs, health clinics, social service agencies, and parenting programs.  The Harlem Children’s Zone provides cradle-to-high school services provided by a private entity. Some of what they have done is worthy of duplication but not under private control where the accountability and transparency evaporate. The question is how much autonomy the District schools have in saying what their school needs.

What If…?

…instead of outsourcing almost $ 4 million services this month, that money was used to put a dent in the estimated $5 billion it will cost to repair our public school buildings—from leaky roofs to deficient electrical systems?

Register to speak at the March 15, 2018 meeting. Call 215-400-4180 before 3:30 PM Wednesday, March 14.

Next SRC meeting: Thursday March 22 at 4:30 PM. To register to speak, call 215-400-4180 before 3:30 PM Wednesday, March 21.

Click here to read Resolutions of Note
for the March 15th SRC meeting.



APPS Researches School Board Nominees

SB nominating panel
The Philadelphia School Board Nominating Panel

As APPS members and followers know, we have been fighting to open up the process for the selection of the new school board.

Mayor Kenney has taken control of the process, raising questions about how independent the Nominating Panel has been.

The Nominating Panel is a governmental body; its members are City officials. The Panel is obligated to follow all laws, including the PA Sunshine Act.

The Sunshine Act stipulates that citizens must be able to witness and have an opportunity to speak about actions taken by government officials, whether elected or appointed. Only two of the Panel’s meetings were held in public; all of the vetting of candidates was done behind closed doors.

The Mayor and the Nominating Panel, Chaired by former SRC Commissioner Wendell Pritchett, also ignored calls to release the applications. Thus, there was no way for the public to know who was being considered or to have anything to say about them. We believe that the public has a right to know who will be representing them as public officials. The school board will be overseeing a $3 billion budget and making decisions which will affect the future of our city and our schools.

What follows is the first installment of reports on the twenty-seven candidates chosen by the thirteen people on the Nominating Panel. The italicized paragraph is the official bio released by the Mayor’s office. What follows is what we were able to find by doing a basic Google/LinkdIn search. If you see any outdated or incorrect information, or you have additional information on any of the nominees, please contact us at

Please follow our posts as we will be updating with information on other nominees.

–Lisa Haver and Deb Grill

Click here to read the first installment of nominee reports.

Click here to read the second installment of nominee reports.

Click here to read the third installment of nominee reports.

Our Researchers

Barbara Dowdall
Ken Derstine
Deborah Grill – editor
Lisa Haver – editor
Karel Kilimnik
Cheri Micheau
Rich Migliore
Diane Payne
Ilene Poses
Coleman Poses
Lynda Rubin