International Parents Group Takes Stand on Proposed Charter School

International Parents Group Takes Stand on Proposed Charter School

Some of the parents in the International Parents Group in front of the letter they wrote about the proposed Progressive Charter SchoolThe International Parents Group at The Welcome Project, based at Somerville's Mystic Housing Development, has asked the state Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to postpone a decision on the proposed Somerville Progressive Charter School so that immigrant families can find out about it and make an informed decision as to whether opening this school will be good for their children.

"We represent many different schools in Somerville. We are concerned about the decisions that are being made in regard to the new charter school," the parents wrote in a letter to DESE's Charter School Office. "We ask for respect and equality for all students in Somerville schools. We feel pressured to make a rapid decision about this issue. We need more information about what is happening and what the benefits are of their academic plan…

"We feel that a decision needs to be delayed until the concerns of the parents who have signed this letter are clarified." The International Parents Group formed last year to ensure that the needs of immigrant families were addressed during the Unification process at the Healey School.

The group now includes parents from several schools and they meet regularly at The Welcome Project. They continue to be an independent voice of immigrant parents at the Mystic Housing Development. A majority of the parents are Latino, though the group also has members from Haiti, Ethiopia, and Viet Nam.