How a 10-Year-Old Responded to NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Attempt to Shut Down Her Charter School

“Alise vs. the Mayor: The King’s Gambit” is the second episode in a mini-series exposing New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s attempts to curb charter schools in his city, though they are some of the best-performing schools in the state and offer a lifeline out of the woefully inadequate public schools for many of the poor.

Directed and produced by TheBlaze’s Will Cain, the series follows 10-year-old Alise Alexander as she finds out the school she loves is being shut down by Mayor de Blasio.

“I think that Mayor de Blasio feels that, as charter schools, we’re denying certain kids opportunities,” Alexander explained. “But that’s actually the opposite of what our school is doing.”

10-year-old Alise Alexander speaks about Success Academy in Harlem, where she is a student. (Photo: TheBlaze TV)
10-year-old Alise Alexander speaks about Success Academy in Harlem, where she is a student. (Photo: TheBlaze TV)

At Success Academy in Harlem, 97% of the students are black or Latino and 77% receive free or reduced-price lunch. Yet despite any disadvantages they may have, the charter school’s fifth graders scored first in the state in math in 2013, beating “the rich kids on the Upper East Side” and “the rich white kids in Westchester,” Cain said.

Alexander said Success Academy is proving stereotypes wrong, demonstrating that no matter “where your your neighborhood is … what your parents do, what you see around you,” you can still succeed.

“Our teachers actually care that we get somewhere in life,” Alexander added. “They actually believe in us.”

And that’s where many believe the controversy lies with Mayor de Blasio. The mayor is a strong supporter of the United Federation of Teachers, and teachers unions are some of the harshest critics of charter schools, since charter schools aren’t required to hire unionized workers.

Cain explained on The Glenn Beck Program Tuesday: “These charter schools go in across the street, sometimes in the same building with non-unionized teachers, and they perform exceptionally better. They expose all of the excuses the teachers unions have used up to this point, ‘we need more money’ and so forth, to show we can do better.”

But Cain speculated that there is a “deeper cancer beneath the connection to the teachers union.”

“On the left, I believe there is an antagonism towards excellence,” Cain stated. “There is an antagonism towards success … ‘If we can equalize the outcome, that’s better than having a situation where we have unequal success.’ Now, they never say that out loud. … It’s said like this, ‘Well, we need to help all of the children.’ But for half a century, saying we need to help all the children has meant helping none of the children.”

You can watch the second episode of “Alise vs. the Mayor” below, and stay tuned for episodes three and four in the coming weeks.

Complimentary clip from TheBlaze TV

You can also watch Cain’s appearance on The Glenn Beck Program here:

Complimentary clip from TheBlaze TV

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Read more about the mini-series “Alise vs. the Mayor” here.