100 Chester Community Charter School Parents Present 1,160 Signed Petitions at Governor Corbett’s Office

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CCCS Parents Protest School District Closing

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One hundred parents of students of the Chester Community Charter School, here, today accompanied the school’s CEO, Dr. David Clark, on a visit to a public hearing of the Pennsylvania State Senate Education Committee, in Harrisburg, where the subject of school funding in the city of Chester was being discussed.

Prior to attending the Senate hearing, the parents visited the office of Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett, where they presented 1,160 petitions signed by the school’s parents, to the Governor’s Deputy Chief of Staff Todd Shamash. In the petition, the parents urged the Governor to “fund our public charter school as you are required to do by the Charter Law.” The final sentence in the document read: “Please, Governor Corbett, don’t abandon us.”

In recent weeks, the Chester Community Charter School has filed a lawsuit against the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Department of Education (Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Docket Number: 632 MD 2011), claiming that the Commonwealth owes the school, now, nearly $7 million, and that it has been ‘severely delinquent’ in its Charter School Law-mandated payments to the school.

Citing CCCS’s success in having its students accepted into top-quality secondary schools and prestigious universities, its nine state-of-the-art school buildings and its One Laptop Per Child program, Clark, at a news briefing on the steps of the Capitol Building, said that the state’s lack of timely payments, “directly affects our ability to pay the salaries of our teachers and administrators, and to pay our school’s vendors. Such a condition, if continued, threatens the continued existence of Chester Community Charter School, and the futures of our children. And because we do educate the majority of the city’s K-8th graders, it also directly threatens the futures of families in the city of Chester, as a whole.”

Clark also added that “We want to remind our elected officials that not only the students in our charter school, but those in the entire Chester-Upland School District are legally entitled to receive an education… and that nearly 7,000 Pennsylvania school children should not lose that legal right to an education, simply because they live in the City of Chester, simply because they live in a city wherein 36 percent of the residents live below the poverty level.”

About Chester Community Charter School
Chester Community Charter School opened its doors on September 9, 1998, serving 97 students from its modest four meeting rooms, in the lobby of the Howard Johnson Hotel. Since that time, the school has steadily grown to include more than 3,000 students. http://www.chestercommunitycharter.org.

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