School Committee Votes No on School Choice

Each year around this time the Revere School Committee is required by Massachusetts Law to hold a public hearing to discuss and vote in favor or against the enrollment of non-Revere resident students into Revere Public Schools.

Some cities in towns in the Commonwealth allow families to enroll their children in schools in their communities even if they reside outside the city or town. The per-pupil funding, which in Massachusetts follows the student, is paid by the sending district to the receiving district.

At last week’s School Committee meeting member Carol Tye made a motion to not participate in the state’s school choice program after Superintendent Dr. Dianne Kelly made a case against the program.

“As you know, we do take this vote every year,” said Kelly. “Many districts and school committees will vote to accept students from other nearby communities and allow those students to enroll in their schools. The conditions in Revere have been such that we have been overcrowded for a long, long time and we just don’t have room in our classrooms to accept students from other districts.”

Kelly said while the program helps some struggling districts that have a hard time filling classrooms and are in need of an extra boost of funding, Revere schools simply don’t have the space.

“It makes sense when other districts have classrooms that are not full, or when they have more building space then they know what to do with–accepting students from other communities can help increase their funding by increasing their enrollment,” said Kelly. “However, that’s not the situation that we (Revere Public Schools) find ourselves in here. “So I would urge the Committee to vote no on the school choice option of accepting students from other districts into the Revere Public Schools.”

Tye made the motion that the Committee vote no and not participate in school choice.

“I feel very passionate about this,” said Tye, who has been an outspoken opponent of the school choice program coming to Revere. “So I move that we vote no on allowing non-Revere, students from non resident students, students from other school systems, to participate in the wonderful education that we give here in Revere.”

The motion by Tye passed unanimously with all Committee members rejecting bringing the state’s school choice program to Revere.

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