Thursday, June 25, 2015
The John Dewey Easy Pass Saga Continues As Students Graduate Unprepared Academically.
After a year and a half OSI investigation of grade fixing and phony credit recovery courses at John Dewey High School in Brooklyn. The investigation is still ongoing which is very puzzling to me. In fact, according to the Daily News, Chancellor Carmen Farina claims that the OSI investigation has failed to substantiate many of the allegations logged against Principal Kathleen Elvin and her administration but that the investigation is still ongoing. I guess the ten teachers who cooperated in the OSI investigation exposing the grade fixing and phony credit recovery is not proof enough that academic fraud is being perpetrated to artificially increase the school's graduation rate at the expense of the student's education.
It seems that the school's "easy pass" system is geared to give struggling seniors essentially free credits so to graduate them despite being academically unprepared. Juan Gonzalez of the Daily News exposed this in his article back in April and showed massive fraud when it came to awarding credits. I also summarized the problems at John Dewey High School in my May post as well. Since then the local CBS affiliate has reported that the DOE has decided to "circle the wagons" and protect the school's administration while allowing their highly questionable credit recovery system called "easy pass" by critics to artificially inflate the graduation rate. In fact, the local CBS affiliate has claimed that the Chancellor refuses to talk about why she has failed to remove the school's Principal and has now employed a personal bodyguard to shoo away their reporters who wanted her to explain her decision to leave the school administration in place.
It seems that the Principal Kathleen Elvin is very vindictive and according to the New York Post retaliated against staff by giving half the school's teachers failing grades. Of the 101 teachers on staff, 16 were rated "ineffective" and 35 were rated "developing". By contrast, only 8% of the teachers citywide were rated "ineffective or developing". Interestingly the school was rated "effective" on the State tests but the terrible observation reports lowered the teacher evaluation grades. One teacher was quoted that "She has a personal vendetta against the teachers and is using the observations as a weapon against the teachers to force them to leave or retire". Interestingly, in the school snapshot a majority of teachers do not believe that the Principal is an effective manager and the union grievance director called the poor rating a "red flag".
This is just another case of a bad Principal being protected by the DOE and a Chancellor that can't see the forest for the trees as the OSI investigation drags on with no report of the alleged educational fraud at John Dewey High School in Brooklyn..