School closings plan gets raucous reception in North Philadelphia

by thenotebook on Jan 09 2013 Posted in Latest news

By Benjamin Herold for NewsWorks, a Notebook news partner

Nearly a thousand angry students and parents from North Philadelphia turned out to a community meeting Tuesday night to challenge the School District’s school closing plan, which would hit their neighborhood especially hard.

“How do you justify closing 12 schools in North Philadelphia?” asked Shamiah Simms, a 6th grader at TM Peirce Elementary at 23rd and Cambria Streets.

Along with Peirce, Strawberry Mansion High and LP Hill, Whittier, Duckrey, Meade, Reynolds and Morris elementary schools would be shut down altogether under the proposal. Vaux High, Rhodes Middle, and Pratt Elementary would lose their academic programs, and the Philadelphia Military Academy at Elverson would move out of its building.

From elected officials to first graders, the crowd overwhelmingly denounced the plan.

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