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Increase in migrant children at NYC school may impact shared special needs facility

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Last Updated on March 26, 2024 by Robert C. Hoopes

A Manhattan School Faces Challenges as Space Crunch Forces Special Needs School to Relocate

An overcrowding issue at a Manhattan school building is leading to the relocation of a special needs school, West Prep Academy, due to a surge in enrollment at PS 145, driven by migrant children. City Education Department officials have offered the academy a new location in a 127-year-old building with no outdoor space or adequate accommodations for disabled students.

West Prep administrators are requesting a delay in the decision and are advocating for a building that better suits the needs of their students. At a town hall meeting in January, parents and students voiced concerns and frustration over the impending move.

The overcrowding issue underscores the challenges faced by both PS 145 and West Prep Academy, which cater to diverse student populations. Enrollment at both schools has been fluctuating, with PS 145 experiencing an increase in student population while West Prep Academy has seen a decline.

This situation has prompted questions about the decision to house two schools in the same building and the lack of suitable facilities for special needs students. As the debate continues, both schools are grappling with the need to find a resolution that accommodates the needs of their students while navigating the constraints of limited space in the city.

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