Briya-Bancroft 30-year partnership to end in June

On the morning of Thursday, March 28h I joined Bancroft and Briya families in the school cafeteria for a Q&A session with a representative from DCPS. The session focused on the loss of space for Briya in the newly modernized Bancroft facility as the school expands due to growing enrollment.

 Briya PCS is a two-generation education model in which mostly immigrant families receive job training and study English, digital literacy, and parenting while their young children receive a high-quality early education. Not only are we losing a truly unique model of mutually beneficial co-location between a charter and district school, but  Bancroft ES is in danger of losing a valuable 30-year partner that empowers traditionally marginalized families.

Here are some takeaways from the meeting:

  • For decades, Briya has shared space with Bancroft, and most Briya families ultimately send their children on to Bancroft for elementary school.

  • Though Bancroft underwent modernization this past year, DCPS inexplicably did not add classrooms to a school that, for the past several years, has had a wait list of approximately 500 students as the Mt Pleasant neighborhood gentrifies.

  • As a result, Briya will have to move out of Bancroft at the end of the year to free up space for new classrooms to alleviate overcrowding in the by-right kindergarten classrooms.

  • During a meeting with a DCPS representative on March 27th, Briya families shared impassioned testimony of what the partnership means to them.

  • In the end, the Briya-Bancroft communities did not seem any more enlightened about why, in its modernization plan, DCPS was not able to both accommodate Bancroft's growth and space to allow this invaluable partnership to continue. 

emily gasoi