We, the parents and teachers of the Bay Shore School District are opposed to the opening of any charter school, but specifically Long Island Children’s Academy Charter School (“LICACS”), within the Bay Shore UFSD for the following reasons:
1. There is no need to add a charter school such as LICACS to the Bay Shore community. Bay Shore UFSD offers numerous programs for our children that will be adversely affected by allowing LICACS to operate. Although the goal of LICACS is not to take funding away from Bay Shore UFSD, that is not a risk we are willing to take for our children.
2. Our community has finally turned the corner with state funding and a more fiscally stable educational environment. Our teachers deserve to start the 2015-2016 school year without the concern of losing their job due to the opening of LICACS. It cannot be denied that if LICACS were to open in our community that fewer teachers would be needed due to decreased enrollment in Bay Shore UFSD and greater enrollment in LICACS.
3. Bay Shore is not a dysfunctional school district. The education the students receive within the district is far superior to anything that this proposed charter school would provide. Bay Shore provides students of all backgrounds with exceptional educational and extracurricular programs that a charter school can not provide. Residents of the Bay Shore community know this and take pride in all the district offers. This can be seen in the many parent support groups such as athletic sponsors, music sponsors, theater sponsors, to name a few. Bay Shore has developed partnerships with organizations like the YMCA that has greatly benefitted our students and families.
4. The LICACS proposal states that “We have targeted these three school districts based on our knowledge of the communities, needs of the families, community feedback, the level of concern at the State and based on their NYS School Report Card data which consistently shows that they are unable to meet the unique needs of their Black, Hispanic, Low SES, and disabled students through their current program structure.” Pg. 9 – R1-Community Need and Proposed School Impact. Bay Shore UFSD is an exceptional district that continually meets the needs and expectations of its students and community. Had LICACS ACTUALLY conducted the research in Bay Shore that they claimed to have performed in their application, they would have discovered the inception of the Bay Shore School District’s Achievement Gap Task Force in February 2015 in newer efforts to serve our uniquely diverse population. The approval of this charter school will take funds and resources away from our public school and will undermine our district’s ability to proceed. The proposed charter school has no proven record that demonstrates it can better address the needs of under performing students.
5. The LICACS proposal claims to have gone into the community to gain support. This statement is false. A meeting scheduled at the Bay Shore Public Library in March was not advertised to anyone in the community. The Lions Club met with LICACS and they did NOT leave with their support. Many groups including the Summit Council which encompasses many other community organizations was not contacted by or aware of LICACS until very recently. The YMCA in Bay Shore also had no knowledge of LICACS. The YMCA works alongside the Bay Shore School District to provide UPK opportunities to many of the residents.
In short: We DO NOT support any charter school within the confines of the Bay Shore School District.