Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Educational Neglect Occurs At Excelsior Preparatory High School And The DOE Does Nothing About It.


























Its no secret that the Bloomberg small high schools that now inhabit the Springfield Gardens Campus in Southeast Queens have been rapidly deteriorating academically.  No longer can these schools exclude "high needs students" or are given extra funds as they were able to obtain previously.  With the leveling of the playing field, these small schools are less appealing to the academically inclined parent and child and the results in the last few years show that.  Each incoming freshman class is more academically challenged then the previous one The college readiness rates have dropped into the single digits and are not trending in the right direction.  None of the schools are diverse  and that's a major part of the problem. Two of the schools received a school grade of "A' under the bogus grading system.  I guess "A" stands for awful.

I have been to all four high schools at the Springfield Gardens campus and cannot recommend any of them either as a teacher or a parent of a student.  Students run the halls during class, disrespecting teachers and each other is the norm, and the school feels unsafe. However, this post is about the educational neglect that occurred at one of the schools, Excelsior Preparatory High School.

Excelsior Preparatory High School is run by a "Leadership Academy Principal" who has grossly failed in her duty to provide her students with a complete and college-ready academic curriculum. In my opinion the Principal practiced educational neglect when it came to her school's 100 Earth Science students.  In a school known for emphasizing Science this makes it even more troubling. Why do I claim educational neglect?  Let me tell the reader the story and decide for yourself.

The story begins with the Science teacher, who taught the Earth Science classes and was "u rated" by the Principal in the last two years and apparently was on his way to receiving an "ineffective" when he stopped showing up as the second semester began.  Officially he was calling in sick but some staff suspected that he was removed.  Regardless, this left the school without an Earth Science teacher.  Did the school recruit for a replacement or check the ATR pool?  Apparently not.  For the next three months the school used the weekly rotating ATRs to "babysit" the class.  It was only in late April did the school assign a Biology teacher to finish off the school year.  By then the lack of labs and because the classes were so far behind in the Earth Science curriculum, the Principal decided to cancel the Earth Science Regents.  That's right, Excelsior Preparatory High School, known for their Science will not be giving the Earth Science Regents tomorrow.

This travesty didn't need to happen.  By a stroke of luck, in March an ATR certified in Earth Science showed up at the school.  Teachers, students, and even the assistant principal was thrilled that the 100 students now had a fighting chance to meet the Earth Science qualifications and sit for the Regents.  The teacher, while not too happy that he might have to stay there for the rest of the year, still worked hard and started doing the labs the students needed and was in the process of setting up a program to get them on task by the end of the school year.  For the first time in months the students were enthused and started to believe they now had a real chance to pass the Earth Science Regents. However, there was a problem.  The Principal decided not to ask the DOE to assign the teacher to the school. Why did she not do the right thing for her students?  Maybe it was that the teacher reminded her of her former "u rated" teacher who left the school, maybe she didn't think the teacher was the "right fit" for her school? Maybe her Children First Network didn't recommend she keep the teacher?  Whatever the reason, the Earth Science teacher left at the end of the week and with him, the last chance for those students to succeed.  It took another month before the Biology teacher was temporarily hired to finish the school year.  The result?  No Earth Science Regents are being offered at the school.

Will the DOE take action and punish the Principal who neglected the needs of 100 students or will they put their collective heads into the sand and ignore it?  I'm guessing the latter since its "children last....Always" at the DOE.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

That whole campus is a mess - I thought Carver was worse - more kids in the halls at all times than in classes. 2 schools got an A?? That is insane - shows you how bogus those grades are! Hate when I get sent there - what a disaster!

Anonymous said...

If you think that Excelsior is bad, maybe you would find Queens Prep to be much worse.
Located on the same floor the principal is a sadistic and vicious megalomaniac.
At least at Excelsior the admin are relatively benign.
The wonderful Tashon Haywood is truly a principal from hell.
The school is complete chaos. The reign of terror is in its full sadistic bloom.
The teachers have to endure a daily barrage of how to teach by a self styled novice.
The students are referred to as scholars and the woman talks absolute drivel while staring at her phone.
Fifty percent of her math teachers were u rated and hunting season is on.
The students are out of control and violent. The behavior is dangerous and the teachers are beaten down.
It's isn't a school it's a youth and teacher daily incarceration center. The place is run by a vicious and sadistic martinet who has a scowl always etched on her face.
It is yet another Bloomberg scam masquerading as a school.
A total catastrophe that is an insult to education.

Bronx ATR said...

Our union should be pushing events like this in the media. I watched CBS news and they listed by name and offense the most egregiously actioned teachers who weren't terminated. It went on to name and blame the judge. They showed (3x) a dean beating up a student inside the school via the schools closed circuit camera. They ultimately blamed it all on tenure. The union will not be in business much longer unless it starts to bring to light incidents like the one you described and start using some public relations to defend us.
By the way none of Eva's 8th graders made it into any of the specialized high schools! Real proof that the charter schools are not superior. That's the real reason they want to change the entrance requirements. But instead of fighting this our union is for it.

Anonymous said...

The crazy thing about this is that superintendents know when there are vacancies in schools. That's how ATR's get called for interviews and whatnot. There's no way this superintendent (in this case Juan Mendez) didn't know that there was an unfilled vacancy in this school. So it's not just the principal not filling a vacancy. It's also the higher ups in the DOE knowing that a vacancy went unfilled, and doing nothing about it. No interviews, no hiring, nothing. This should merit an immediate meeting with the Chancellor/Deputy Chancellor. But we know it won't. It will be a game of "Oh I didn't know" and "I couldn't find anyone willing to teach" or "He didn't tell me he was a licensed ES teacher." And everyone will have a happy, restful summer.

Anonymous said...

And CHAZ wants to replace the weekly rotations with yearly forced placements at a school like this. No word he does not post my comments on these issue any more. To many of our brothers and sister atrs agree with me. CHAZ's yellow journalism. I pray that they place you in Springfield Gardens Campus for a year CHAZ.

Anonymous said...

Chaz-if you want to add another school were malfeasance occurs daily please investigate and report the doings at Automotive High School in Williamsburg. Last week 11 staff members were given bogus excessing letters by the principal one Caterina Lafergola. This principal is being backed by the DOE higher ups and was referred to as Santa Caterina in a CSA publication this spring. Please check it out and let your readers know.

Anonymous said...

http://www.qgazette.com/news/2014-06-18/Features/Former_Principal_Wants_Plaque_Restored.html

This booted principal wants to be noticed.

Anonymous said...

Don't Tread on Education is tracking abusive admins and we'll be publishing a "dirty dozen" list of the "one's to look out for." If you have specific complaints or issues, please consider going to the link below (use a pseudonym if you wish but make sure your email works) and document these principals' misconduct on this form: http://dtoe.org/educations-f-list-and-anoi-nomination-form/

You'll be kept anonymous.

DTOE's website is dtoe.org

Anonymous said...

the whole campus is a mess - Carver is a mess - more kids in the halls than in the classes. Terrible place - would never want to be placed there or at sooooooo many other places. Far Rock - Campus Magnet - Beach Channel - East West - Queens Collegiate - Bryant - Queens Gateway - HS of Teaching - Queens Collegiate- all hell on earth

Anonymous said...

its a mess but sad to say I have seen worst places than Springfield gardens

Anonymous said...

By the way, our bonus hits next week and it's over 860 net. So all you whiners complaining, it was a minimal taxation. Good thing there's less than 25 out of 75,000 teachers on this site.

Anonymous said...

You guys have obviously never worked in the Bronx. By far the worst 3rd world schools to work in. I live in Westchester and just applied to whole bunch of schools in Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan. The media should play some footage, via the freedom of information act ,to see the unbelievable things that go on. "It's a beautiful day" might be moved to action, (instead of saying she's losing sleep when a kid takes matters into his own hands, after asking for help for months from a system that hates kids).

Anonymous said...

they can take their 860 dollars and shove it - and you can shove it to you slug - a measly 860 dollars is not worth giving up a lifetime of union rights !! What is wrong with - you act like you won the lottery for 860 dollars - they can keep their paltry payoff and give me back my seniority rights so I can take your position!

Bronx ATR said...

To 10:25,
No one but a moron would vote yes to this contract for the $1000 bribe; $860 makes it even more ludicrous. What will you do as an ATR when tenure is stripped? I'm sure the union and that $860 will protect you. By the way, I think this blog is more informative and influential than anything the UFT publishes or does.

Anonymous said...

Hey Lafergola was doing one of her baseball players at QHST years ago.Guess she got a promotion, cause now she is screwing everyone.

Anonymous said...

I agree the Bronx has to be the worst..A kid was just stabbed to death by another kid outside a bronx middle school this week..Bronx do not apply

Anonymous said...

By the way. Does anyone now what happened to Jose Vargas the Bronx Borough Rep? He is not there but has been spotted at 52 Broadway

Anonymous said...

WOW! It really is true!!!!

Teachers/Administrators/Union Rep really didn't tell me about the TWO WAY MIRRORS at The Queens High School for Teaching!

Anonymous said...

Someone needs to look at the superintendent of dist 28 in queens and all her failing schools in south jamsica! Hellholes! She has put her friends in ss principals who r trying to get rid of senior staff wth charter school teachers ?!?

Anonymous said...

Yayyyy, the hiring freeze was truly lifted. Several friends got jobs already in mostly new school, no experience nec. ATR's have nowhere to go. 100% forced placement Oct 15. Any borough, any school. Damn. Suxx.

Chaz said...

To the racist slime who's comment I refuse to print. Maybe you should explain why your school Principal did this to the students? It seems your failure to realize what she dd as wrong makes me questionif you really are a teacher or just a friend of this failing Principal.

Anonymous said...

Simply stated, I have worked at Excelsior. The principal suffers from narcissism. She is by far one of the most evil, inept, and self aggrandizing administrators I have come across. If for a moment she feels slighted by you, the children will nearly always suffer because of her need to retaliate.

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Anonymous said...

im starting school at excelsior this thursday lol.