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COMMUNITY EDUCATION COUNCIL DISTRICT 3

154 West 93rd Street New York, New York 10025 - Room 204 Tel (212) 678-2782 Fax (212) 678-2804 Email: CEC3@schools.nyc.gov
Joseph A. Fiordaliso
President

Nan Eileen Mead


First Vice President

Zoe G. Foundotos
Second Vice President

Council Members: Noah Gotbaum Theresa L.C. Hammonds Pradnya Joshi


Lucas Liu
Vacant, ELL Member
Vacant, Student Member

Kristen Berger
Secretary

Daniel Katz

Kimberly Watkins
Treasurer

Ilene Altschul
District 3 Community Superintendent

DRAFT Meeting Minutes Zoning Committee


Thursday, October 15th (9:00 am 12:00 pm)
Joan of Arc Complex 154 West 93rd Street

Attendance: 43 members of the community including 5 CEC members, Superintendent Altschul, Sarah
Turchin from DOE District Planning, and four elected official representatives.
Chair reminded the group that the session was being taped and that to hear recorded podcasts of the
Zoning Committee, visit www.spreaker.com/user/8322048.
Reminders also that on Saturday, October 17 at PS191, the second public hearing will take place. On
Monday, November 2nd, at Joan of Arc, the DOE will make final presentation to community. This triggers
the 45 day window for the CEC to vote. Thursday, November 19 is the Calendar Meeting of the CEC,
during which members will vote on a plan. This meeting takes place at PS87.

With the goal of the meeting to dissect the DOE draft rezoning plan, the group began a discussion of the
major themes since its unveiling for the first time on September 28 at the last committee meeting and the
first public hearing on October 7.
Though many members of the community have expressed the desire for more time to understand the
zoning process, meetings and events have been very well attended so far. 150 members of community
present at last weeks first public hearing; 50 people spoke. The most abundantly clear message that the
community offers is that very few stakeholders favor this proposal as it is currently constructed.
CEC members have been mining the data of online comments and on CEC3 website questionnaire and
emails sent. The following recurring themes have been posted:
1.
Timing of this rezoning asking for more time, which is an option. The CEC could simply vote to
reject the DOE's plan but that would carry with it a number of consequences, including the untenable
overcrowding at PS199 and the under-enrollment at PS191. It could, in fact, have an impact on the entire
district, as other schools would absorb the waitlist families.
2.
Desire to determine zone lines based on older buildings, coops/older buildings, etc. The DOE has
stated publicly that they do not draw lines based on owned v rented units and the age of a building; further
representatives reminded us that the lines must be contiguous, so the map lines where a building is simply
zoned out because it is new, or an old building is zoned in because it's been around for a long time are not
necessarily possible.
3.
What to do about making 191 a place where everyone wants to send their children, especially
given proposed larger zone size?

Sarah Turchin then took the group through the proposal again with the one difference that the superzone
map now includes the bowtie portion set to be rezoned to PS452, as that school expressed the desire to
increase its size to confirm to its original school structural plan (with three classes per grade).
Dialog re bow tie at 71st street and Broadway/7th Avenue/Amsterdam (slide 10)
Request for additional data (on actual enrollments vs. residents in the zone); Sarah will try to get this
information ASAP (based on what can be shared with privacy laws, etc.)

School

Zone Enrollment
(% of students from within
the zone)

199
191
452

98%
67%
77%

Zone Retention
(kindergarten residents that
have entered in the DOE
system)
89%
56%
70%

Shifts to existing zones would be done for 2016 school year with the stipulation that the opening of PS342
in 2018 is included in this proposal as a shared zone school with PS191, or with the three school super
zone.
DOE Super Zone Scenario
Modification from the first super zone schematic pulls the bow tie east of Amsterdam Ave over to
PS452 as it does in the zoned scenario map.
New slides were also added to the DOE proposal related to the super zone. The DOE draws zone lines to
have all residents within 0.5 mile where possible. This is not possible with the super zone scenario.
With super zone proposal, families would rank preferences as they do now. Offers would go out to the
specified number of students per school, and that offered school then becomes the students zoned
school. A schools wait list would be comprised of all non-zoned students, and as slots opened up, the
wait list would be managed by number. So the 199 wait list would be even bigger than it has been in the
past.
Another drawback to the super zone is the elimination of the neighborhood school. This criticism has been
widely discussed, as many stakeholders believe that the neighborhood includes both schools. However no
conclusion was highlighted and the issue will continue to be discussed.
Sibling Grandfathering
In a discussion about grandfathering siblings into a zone if ones building moves to a new zone, CEC
members expressed that precedent that is strong for adding sibling clause into Rezoning Plan.
342 Incubation
SI Altschul and DOE responded to the idea of incubating the new school now that there wasnt enough
time to do so and that there isnt space in the southern part of the district, including at PS191.
Persistently Dangerous ranking at PS191
Many community members continue to remark about the implication for the PDS at PS191. SI Altschul
remarked that the school is doing its part in terms of extra reporting and oversight. She said that hopefully
it will be off by end of the year. The new list is published at the end of July, which means, however that

the PDS status will remain during the next admissions cycle. SI Altschul also indicated that until it goes
away, families have option to transfer under state law, but they are not guaranteed transfer it is based
on space.
School Pairing grade splits
SI Altschul indicated that for pedagogical and logistical reasons, she does not support pairing approach.
She but does not believe that grade splitting provides educational continuity. It is also not supported by the
DOE, by the Chancellor.
Capacity vs. enrollment
These figures were put on the board so that members could have an understanding of where students are in
schools relative to the stated/safe size of the buildings in which their school resides.
Zone Retention
Zone Enrollment
(kindergarten residents that
(% of students from within
School
have entered in the DOE
the zone)
system)
OShea
1191
TBD
199
738
912
191
644
425
Solutions to 191
Committee members then listed a number of possible ways to improve PS191, given that the entire zoning
exercise really hinges on the ability to get newly zoned families to accept that school.
1. Phase out 191 middle school its severely under enrolled, it isnt screened, and many kids
travel to 191 from outside of the district. In addition, the DOE has stated that it prefers K-5
model, so make all three of these schools (191/199/342) K-5.
2. Expand 191 early childhood/Pre-K PS191 could add a fifth PreK class to meet additional
demand for Universal PreK.
3. Pairing (191/342 or 199/191/342) SI may not prefer it, but other schools have done this
successfully so committee members plan to explore more
4. Move 191 into new building state of the art PS342 could be a great location for a struggling
school
5. Integrate Amsterdam Housing into 3 schools this would make a meaningful impact on the
diversity statistics. Instead of adjusting the denominator, the numerator would move, which
means more minority children would attend PS199.
6. Get more information on incidents at 191 to put parents more at ease. This is a tough situation,
because the CEC has been working on this since the summer. Officials have requested redacted
data through FOIA to no avail.
7. Add Gifted & Talented at 191
8. Make deal with developer at 200 Amsterdam - Insert school into bottom floors. Offer the
developer even more floors as bonus.
9. Eliminate rental loophole for 199 (DOE has stated publicly that they do not believe this
problem to be wide spread, however 199 parents believe that it is)
10. Create stronger math curriculumfor 191
11. Add bilingual education in 191
Next Committee Meeting: Monday, October 26
Joan of Arc Auditorium, 154 West 93rd Street