For more than a year, we followed the saga surrounding Girls Prep, the charter school that fought to expand its middle school on the Lower East Side. Gotham Schools notes it’s one of two schools that performed particularly badly in the latest progress reports released by the NYC Department of Education:
Merrick Academy and Girls Prep – two schools that were plagued with problems with staff and space, respectively-experienced large drops in their overall Progress Report Scores and percentile rankings. Merrick Academy’s overall score dropped by over 80 points and its percentile ranking fell from 76% of all schools to the bottom 3%. Girls Prep Charter School’s score dropped by 70 points and its rank dropped from the 82ndpercentile to the 13th… Girls Prep’s plummet is especially noteworthy, since the Department of Education has attempted to support the school’s search for space, with Chancellor Joel Klein at one point offering to use emergency powers to find space. The school’s prominent board of directors includes Boykin Curry and EricGrannis, charter school leader and politico Eva Moskowitz’s husband.
Controversy over the school’s expansion eased, at least temporarily, in August when Girls Prep decided to lease space in a building on Cooper Square. The charter school shares space in a 100-year old building on East Houston Street with P.S. 188 and P.S. 94, a special needs school.