Inside Colocation

The public school where I've been teaching for the last 8 years has been targeted for a "colocation" with a corporate-model charter school. Most people, including me, don't know what a colocation looks like, though we've heard bleak stories. I've started this blog to document it as best I can.


While controversy continues over inequitable improvements to the charter school, internal efforts have been made to build community among everyone in the building. Members from each of the four schools in the building coordinated an Ice Cream Mixer so that teachers and other employees could meet and chat. The event was positive and well-attended, and everyone was friendly and polite. One administrator made a brief speech emphasizing that we are all in this together, as we collectively service a building full of diverse students grades K through 12. With all the staffs together, appearances became hard to ignore. While the staffs of the three public schools are diverse in experience, age, ethnicity, and birthplace, the charter school staff was almost entirely made up of white recent college-graduates in their early twenties, from out of state, who moved to Brooklyn months ago when recruited through programs like Teach for America. The uniformity of the charter school staff stood in glaring contrast to the staffs of the other schools.

While controversy continues over inequitable improvements to the charter school, internal efforts have been made to build community among everyone in the building. Members from each of the four schools in the building coordinated an Ice Cream Mixer so that teachers and other employees could meet and chat. The event was positive and well-attended, and everyone was friendly and polite. One administrator made a brief speech emphasizing that we are all in this together, as we collectively service a building full of diverse students grades K through 12. With all the staffs together, appearances became hard to ignore. While the staffs of the three public schools are diverse in experience, age, ethnicity, and birthplace, the charter school staff was almost entirely made up of white recent college-graduates in their early twenties, from out of state, who moved to Brooklyn months ago when recruited through programs like Teach for America. The uniformity of the charter school staff stood in glaring contrast to the staffs of the other schools.