But summer is finally here, and, again, the season seems to signal something: There are reasons - more each day - to feel growing optimism about what we have done and will do to protect our school from proposed construction. Parents have pulled together and worked with incredible dedication and impressive savvy to generate a great deal of positive momentum. Please consider what we as a school have put into motion - even with scant resources and against towering opposition:
-meaningful engagement with politicians
-creation of potential city-wide legislation to protect our school
-District 3 Community Education Council and Community Board 7 resolutions standing in solidarity with our school
-powerful legal and PR traction
These are reasons to feel proud: Proud of your decision to send your child to a school like PS 163, where parents care, stand up for what is right and follow through on what needs to be done. Proud to be part of a school community that has engaged strategically with lawmakers, regulators, the media, leaders of municipal and educational policy. Proud to have shown up for public hearings, or the press conference, or made a sign or a donation, or watched the TFSS DVD together with your child.
As you wrap up the school year with your child, take time to tell him or her what it is that YOU have been doing to keep our school safe. Sit down and call Council Member Mark Levine’s office and demand that he work more quickly to pass the legislation he promised to keep our school safe; call the Mayor's office and articulate your concerns and ask him to stop this senseless project. Join us at next week’s Town Hall with Chancellor Farina. Write your other elected officials to let them know what we expect of them. Be a light of engagement to your child and for our school.
With our joined efforts, we have grounds to believe we can stop the construction project from happening or - at minimum - lessen the harm it could cause if it is allowed to proceed. Over the summer, the Task Force for a Safe School won't take a break. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter, join our email list and check our blog regularly for updates. If you have an hour or two, or more, to spare, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Join us and continue to make a difference to the future of PS 163.
Let's keep this energy flowing, keep holding our elected officials to their promises, and keep the PS 163 sun shining bright.