Puerto Rico’s Public Schools at Risk, AFSA Leaders Respond

Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossell√≥ recently announced a plan to overhaul the island’s public education system. In response, AFSA Executive Vice President Ernest Logan, along with Domingo Madera, President of Educadores Puertorriquenos en Accion, Inc. (EPA), AFSA Local 105 released the following statement:

“We are extremely troubled with the new plan announced by Gov. Rossell√≥ and Education Secretary Julia Keleher,”

“Our nation’s public schools are open to all students, are the cornerstone of our democracy, and the pillars of our communities. Following the grave destruction caused by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, the children and communities in Puerto Rico need stability and a return to normalcy,”

“However, rather than providing stability by investing and strengthening public schools, this new plan will do the exact opposite. Private schools and charters may benefit a select few, but this is too often the exception rather than the rule. This has proven to be the case in many other cities across the United States, time and time again,”

“By diverting much needed resources away from public schools, Gov. Rossell√≥’s plan will set the island of Puerto Rico backwards. Private school vouchers do not ensure equal access to education and do not serve the students most in need of educational opportunities. This will only be exacerbated in Puerto Rico, where an investment in public schools is so desperately needed,”

“Although our members, by their nature as school leaders, will step up and give everything they can to ensure their students receive a high quality education, this plan will make that mission more difficult. AFSA and Local 105 condemn this plan in the strongest possible terms.”