Several city councilors said today they strongly back Councilor Charles Yancey's longstanding proposal to put a high school on a 20-acre parcel on the grounds of the former Boston State Hospital.
However, Council President Bill Linehan deferred any vote on the idea after several councilors also said that while they don't oppose the idea, they need more information on it. Among those: Mark Ciommo (Allston/Brighton), who chaired a hearing at the Mattapan public library just last night on the idea.
Yancey (Dorchester, Mattapan) said said 4,000 BPS high-school students are in substandard buildings and that not a single one is in a state-of-the-art building. Yancey has been fighting for a Mattapan high school since the 1990s, he said it's time to finally act, especially now that Tom Menino is no longer mayor. He
The Mattapan school, which would have space for 1,250 students, would let Boston kids compete with their counterparts in the suburbs, many of whom now attend classes in new buildings, he and Councilor Tito Jackson (Roxbury) said.
Councilor Tim McCarthy (Hyde Park, Roslindale, Mattapan), who supports the idea, asked: "Where else do we have 20 acres of land to build a campus-style school in the city of Boston?"
Councilor Frank Baker (Dorchester) and Michelle Wu (at large) said they support the basic idea, but could not vote for it today because they just don't know enough about it. Unlike Yancey, neither was on the city council in the 1990s. Baker said he wants to get buy-in from Mayor Walsh before he votes on the proposal.