Ears on the SRC – May 19, 2016

SRC 5-19-16

By Diane Payne

May 23, 2016

 APPS Presence

APPS members continue to bear witness to the actions of the state-imposed School Reform Commission.  Whether the meeting is crowded or sparsely attended, we testify every month on crucial issues, not the least of which is the SRC’s lack of transparency and public accountability. APPS members were present to call “shame” on the SRC when it convened its stealth meeting to cancel the PFT contract. This month APPS members Karel Kilimnik, Diane Payne and Robin Lowry spoke on a number of issues. To view their testimony, go to APPSphilly.net.

Among the public speakers was a dedicated group of Penrose School parents from Southwest Philadelphia. They voiced their anger and frustrations at both the district administration and the Penrose school administration’s failure to support their hard work toward redesign.  There is never a penalty for district’s failures but schools are labeled and then closed, turned over to charters, and subjected to the chaos and churn of the turn-around model.

SRC Rejects Charter Office Report, Changes Procedure to Hold Up Non-Renewal of Renaissance Schools

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APPS members testimony to the Philadelphia School Reform Commission – May 19, 2016

SRC pic 5-19-16

On May 19, 2016 the Philadelphia School Reform Commission’s met to decide on turnover of public schools to charters and the proposed non-renewal of four charters.

This is testimony of members of the Alliance for Philadelphia Public Schools at this meeting.

All three videos can be viewed here.

Click on the pictures below to view individual videos. Speakers are in order of appearance.


Karel Kilimnick pic 5-19-16

Video of APPS member Karel Kilimnik testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – May 19, 2016.

The transcript of Karel’s testimony.


Diane Payne SRC testimony 5-19-16

Video of APPS member Diane Payne testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – May 19, 2016.

The transcript of Diane’s testimony.


Robin Lowry SRC 5-19-16

Video of APPS member Robin Lowry testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – May 19, 2016.


Ears on the SRC – April 28, 2016

src 4-28-16
The Philadelphia School Reform Commission – April 28, 2016

By Diane Payne

May 6, 2016

 How We Got Here

Looking back over all of the shenanigans we have witnessed over the past six months, when Superintendent William Hite announced his intention to place Cooke, Huey and Wister elementary schools into the Renaissance program, we see how the parents and community were shut out of the process from the beginning. Months later, Dr. Hite reversed his recommendation to place Wister on the chopping block citing improved performance data (which was revealed by APPS member Coleman Poses).   But Commissioner Simms threw a curve ball with her surprise motion from the floor to return Wister to the chopping block, expressing her “pent-up emotions” after meeting with parents advocating for a Mastery takeover. None of the other SRC members ever explained why, in this case, the data was not driving their decision.

In the case of Cooke Elementary, City Councilwoman Helen Gym’s office sent data-rich information and questions regarding the competency of Great Oaks Charter, especially since that company has never managed a K-8 school. This report called for a moratorium on the entire process.  

Gym’s office submitted another data-rich document, questioning the supposed cost savings of Renaissance schools overall.

Finally, another shady district maneuver surrounding the entire process was discovered when APPS co-founder Lisa Haver requested the evaluation reports which Superintendent Hite touted as part of the parent involvement component to his top-down decision.  No reports were to be found anywhere; in fact, it appeared no one even knew what Lisa was requesting…including Dr. Hite himself.  So much for that “community engagement” stuff. 


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APPS members testimony to the Philadelphia School Reform Commission – April 28, 2016

SRC 4-28-16

On April 28, 2016 the Philadelphia School Reform Commission’s monthly meeting was held for a vote on turning three public schools over to charter companies and renewals for nine existing charters.

This is testimony of members of the Alliance for Philadelphia Public Schools at this meeting.

All eight videos can be viewed here.

Click on the pictures below to view individual videos. Speakers are in order of appearance.


Lynda Rubin SRC video 4-28-16

Video of APPS member Lynda Rubin testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – April 28, 2016.

The transcript of Lynda’s testimony.


Diane Payne pic SRC 4-28-16

Video of APPS member Diane Payne testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – April 28, 2016.

The transcript of Diane’s testimony.


Lisa Haver pic SRC 4-28-16

Video of APPS member Lisa Haver testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – April 28, 2016.

The transcript of Lisa’s testimony.


Debbie Grill SRC 4-28-16

Video of APPS member Deborah Grill testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – April 28, 2016.

The transcript of Debbie’s testimony.


Ilene Poses pic SRC 4-28-16

Video of APPS member Ilene Poses testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – April 28, 2016.

The transcript of Ilene’s testimony.


Karel Kilimnick pic SRC 4-28-16

Video of APPS member Karel Kilimnik testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – April 28, 2016

The transcript of Karel’s testimony.


Barbara Dowdall pic 4-28-16

Video of APPS member Barbara Dowdall testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – April 28, 2016.

The transcript of Barbara’s testimony.


Robin Lowry pic SRC 4-28-16

Video of APPS member Robin Lowry testifying at the Philadelphia School Reform Commission hearing – April 28, 2016.

The transcript of Robin’s testimony.