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Pennsylvania National Action Network Statement on Sale of William Penn High School
Pennsylvania National Action Network Statement on Sale of William Penn High School
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Pennsylvania National Action Network Statement on Sale of William Penn High School


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  • 1. FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Faye Anderson Media Liaison Pennsylvania State Chapter National Action Network (215) 765-6181 STATEMENT FROM PENNSYLVANIA NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK ON SALE OF WILLIAM PENN HIGH SCHOOL Philadelphia, PA – June 20, 2014 – It’s a sad day in North Philadelphia that William Penn High School has been sold to Temple University. We agree with Commissioner Sylvia Simms that the community has been “bamboozled.” It’s outrageous that Councilman Darrell Clarke refused to meet with his constituents who would be directly impacted by Temple’s plan to build athletic facilities across from their homes. The Pennsylvania State Chapter National Action Network (PA NAN) has called attention to the appearance of a conflict of interest. Temple’s Senior Vice President for Government, Community and Public Affairs serves on the board of directors of the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC), the agency tapped by the School District of Philadelphia to accelerate the sale of William Penn. The lack of transparency is particularly troubling. Since 2009, the Office of Property Assessment reported that William Penn High School has a market value of more than $32 million. Yet the asking price for this prime property was $15 million. Philadelphia taxpayers have a right to know why the School District left $17 million on the table. PA NAN filed a Right to Know request to find out what valuation model the School District used to arrive at the asking price. The School District responded it would provide “a final response to your request on or before July 14, 2014” – nearly a month after the School Reform Commission voted to sell William Penn. Today, it’s Yorktown and Jefferson Manor homeowners. Tomorrow, it could be your home. It is our homes, our property values, and our history that is being erased. PA NAN will hold accountable elected officials who have forgotten whose interests they were elected to represent. While our so-called leaders kowtow to the moneyed interests in the suites, we will keep the community informed and take action. We will remember in November 2014 and beyond.
  • 2. About Pennsylvania State Chapter National Action Network: The Pennsylvania State Chapter National Action Network is a nonprofit organization incorporated for the purpose of advocating for equal education opportunities and equal justice under the law; promoting policies and initiatives to reduce gun violence, racial profiling and “stop and frisk” policing; and fostering civic engagement by hosting public forums, rallies and other nonpartisan events. For more information, visit About National Action Network: The National Action Network is the nation’s leading civil rights and human rights organization, with chapters throughout the United States. Founded in 1991 by Reverend Al Sharpton, NAN works within the spirit and tradition of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to promote a modern civil rights agenda that includes the fight for one standard of justice, decency and equal opportunities for all people regardless of race, religion, nationality or gender. For more information, visit