HUFFINGTON POST by Tom Allon 02/04/2013.
As an education activist and a candidate for mayor, I lend my voice to these voiceless parents in urging New York’s DOE to let the parents of East Harlem have a tested and well thought through progressive middle school.
School choice has been a positive development in public education in New York, but sometimes the city's Department of Education makes the wrong choice.
This is the case in a fierce education battle in East Harlem, where a community of parents is fighting for their school's expansion. They have been shut out by DOE and their petition drive is a fantastic example of educational democracy in action.
I recently visited Central Park East I and CPE II and was incredibly impressed with the two principals, the quality of the teachers and the general upbeat mood of the children, in an otherwise antiquated, dreary and crowded public school building.
CPE I and II are Progessive schools founded more than 35 years ago by famed educator Deborah Meier. Progressive schools are a great alternative to traditional public schools; they emphasize learning, creativity and curiosity more than memorization and testing. They welcome parental involvement and parents in the classroom regularly, rather than just for parent-teacher conferences and school play nights.READ MORE