Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Violence In Our Schools: Is This The Worst Of All?

Number 2 Pencil's got the story of a New York City school that is so violently out-of-control that the nationally-recognized Teach For America program has withdrawn all ten corps members from the campus for safety reasons:
Teachers said students routinely roam the halls of the W. 129th St. building, pushing their way into classrooms where they don't belong and pulling fire alarms.

"I have told teachers to lock their doors for their personal safety," said Sandy Haiman, who is paid to mentor five rookie teachers at the school.

Haiman, a retired teacher who worked 27 years in city schools, said she has never witnessed a school as out of control as IS 172.

"I have to wear earplugs — that's how bad the noise level is," she said.
I feel sorry for the students and teachers who don't have the option of escaping from this awful situation.

Heh. I wonder if U.S. Education Secretary Margaret Spellings, also known around some Faculty Lounges as The Queen of All Testing, would step into the breach, go to the campus, and with her Commanding Presence, bring some semblance of order to this troubled school.

Or would Spellings simply send one of those memos with her trite
trademark phrase, "Put on your big girl panties and deal with it," at the top reminding the embattled students and staff of this school that No Disruptive, Violent, or Defiant Student is permitted to leave themselves behind but that the schools alone will still be held "accountable" for their progress.
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