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Ackerman’s Absence From SRC Meeting Raises Questions About Her Future

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(Pennsylvania state senator Anthony Williams addresses the Philadelphia School Reform Commission on Wednesday.  Credit: Mike DeNardo)

(Pennsylvania state senator Anthony Williams addresses the Philadelphia School Reform Commission on Wednesday. Credit: Mike DeNardo)

Mike DeNardo Mike DeNardo
Mike DeNardo, a veteran of KYW Newsradio for more than 25 years,...
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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Where was embattled Philadelphia schools superintendent Arlene Ackerman yesterday?  She was not at the School Reform Commission meeting, amid reports that the SRC wants her out.

District spokeswoman Shana Kemp told reporters that Ackerman “didn’t feel well.”

But Pennsylvania state senator Anthony Williams, an Ackerman supporter, did attend the meeting.  And he asked SRC chair Robert Archie where Ackerman was.

“Can you give me the reason for why she would be home and not here?”

“She chose not to be here,” Archie replied.

But Williams told reporters later that he’s not buying that.

“I don’t think it’s because she chose not to be here,” he said. “I frankly have other information.”

Williams says he believes the SRC is “marginalizing” Ackerman.  He says she told him she’d found money to expand her Promise Academy program but was overruled by the SRC (see previous story).

Williams says he’s not sure where Mayor Nutter stands on Ackerman.

“I think that if he does support her, he should make that clear to the public,” Williams said.

A spokesman for Mayor Nutter says the mayor doesn’t discuss personnel matters on agencies that are out of his direct control.

Archie refused to talk with reporters after the meeting.

Reported by Mike DeNardo, KYW Newsradio 1060

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