The New York City Department of Education has announced that it will not relocate P.S. 150, heeding the protests of parents, community leaders, and Lower Manhattan elected officials in their fight to keep the school in the neighborhood.
Earlier this year, the DOE proposed to relocate P.S. 150 in Tribeca to the future Foundling School in Chelsea starting in the 2014-1015 school year, to the surprise and opposition of parents in the community concerned about overcrowding in zoned schools and what would be a lengthy commute to West 17th Street for children living downtown. Lower Manhattan elected officials wrote to the Department of Education calling for expanded opportunity for impacted stakeholders to participate in discussions about the proposal in public hearings, allowing parents to review and vet the proposal.
On June 12, 2013, the DOE recognized that Lower Manhattan neighborhoods will face a raw need of around 1,000 school seats by 2019. In light of the news, Lower Manhattan elected officials again wrote a letter requesting that the Department of Education postpone all proposals to relocate P.S. 150 until it formulated a plan to resolve such a large projected seat deficit that will necessarily involve a considerable restructuring of the public school system in Lower Manhattan.
The DOE notified stakeholders that it would not move forward with the proposal to relocate the schools. P.S 150 is among the highest-performing schools in Lower Manhattan on the Common Core State Standards.
"P.S. 150 is well-loved and respected in our community for its commitment and dedication to its students, and I thank the DOE for listening to the many voices that came together to keep the school in place. In Lower Manhattan, where the population growth outpaces the building of new schools, every school seat counts," said Council Member Margaret Chin.
"P.S. 150 families are thankful and appreciative of the DOE's decision not to move the school to Chelsea in 2014," said the school's PTA President Wendy Chapman. "Throughout this process, elected officials, CB1 community leaders, CEC members, local press and families came together to seek alternatives to the DOE's proposal. In a time where it is easy to disengage, this process has brought people together. P.S.150 is an amazing little school that is proud to be part of the downtown community."