Ears on the SRC: March 15, 2018

SRC 3 3-15-18

by Diane Payne
March 21, 2018


This was a regularly scheduled action meeting, and all four of the remaining commissioners were present. Commissioner Farah Jimenez resigned unexpectedly after last month’s meeting. In her resignation letter to Governor Wolf, which gave no reason for her resignation, Jimenez said that “..it has been a gift to be in service to the students of Philadelphia.”

Ms. Jimenez secured the position of President and CEO of the Philadelphia Education Fund (PEF) in 2016. Prior to Jimenez’s appointment, PEF meetings were open to the public. However, slightly more than a year after assuming this role, Ms. Jimenez barred three regular attenders of PEF Compact meetings, including a public school parent, even though they had tickets (which were not required prior to Jimenez’s appointment). Admittance to these meeting are now guaranteed only to regular financial contributors of PEF, even though their purpose is to discuss public education; others can take their chances on a waiting list. APPS has questioned, as have members of City Council, the potential conflict of interest in serving as an SRC Commissioner while leading PEF.

Jimenez has been a consistent and vocal supporter of charter schools. No matter the drain of resources it caused to existing public schools, no matter the harm to remaining public school students, and no matter the lack of demonstrable success of charter schools. Charter expansion at any cost is a big part of the legacy of Commissioner Jimenez.

Ten members of APPS were present for this meeting; four members and others testified on behalf of public education.

A Matter of Integrity

Click here to read the rest of the post.

The second installment of Philadelphia School Board nominee reports

SB nominating panel

As promised, APPS researchers have completed the independent profiles of the first round of nominees chosen by the Education Nominating Panel. Mayor Kenney, in response to community protests about the possible conflicts of the nominees, and the dearth of educators on the first list, reconvened the Panel on Friday, March 16.  APPS members Barbara Dowdall, Lynda Rubin and Lisa Haver testified, again decrying the lack of public deliberations and the ongoing violations of the PA Sunshine Act.  The Panel voted to send eighteen more nominees to the Mayor.  The Mayor has twenty days to choose nine of the forty-five submitted as his final choices.

We will be releasing our extended profiles on the additional candidates later this week.

Please review our first report, as important updates and links have been added.

Lisa Haver and Deb Grill

Click here to see the second installment of biographies
and APPS analysis of School Board nominees.

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.


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