Society is quick to throw
People out with the trash-
If you’re hungry, shut your trap;
Otherwise they’ll beat you up,
And enjoy it too.
if you dare to argue,
They kick you out-
For you, poor guys, have been sacked
By the higher-ups.
Hanns Eisler, Welfare Song.
Hillcrest is a comprehensive high school in Queens, over 3400 students, an ethnically diverse population and a glowing reputation. In a recent lengthy article in Education Week explaining the new Department of Ed configuration Hillcrest is featured.
The school has restructured into small learning communities and is deeply studying the progress of their students. The principal has been in place for more than a decade and has lead the school in a total “makeover.”
From the DOE perspective: it is an “ordinary” school – it’s Report Card grade – a C.
The NY Daily News challenges the Report Card grade – however – Tweed blindly defends the grade.
The Hillcrest community, parents, students, teachers, elected officials rave about their wonderful neighborhood school. The wide range of course offerings, the safety within the building … the achievements of Hillcrest are the goal of many other schools.
Scores of other secondary schools, who look up and admire the success of Hillcrest received grade of A and B.
For ostriches at Tweed: Hillcrest is just average.
Is the School Report Card system flawed, or, is the Department attacking all large high schools?
Let’s take a look at Beach Channel, 1800 students, also with a diverse student body. Many of their students come from struggling middle schools in Rockaway, an area, unfortunately, with serous gang problems. The Tweed response: send “over the counter” students with serious “issues,” and no school notification to the problems these students bring with them.
Carnarsie High School is abandoned by the Regional Superintendent … and no surprise becomes a SURR school and receives and F on their Report Card … the principal is removed … but no other help is provided … are they setting Carnarsie up to be closed?
Last year the Department closed five high schools and reorganized the Alternative High Schools (District 79), the result: hundreds of excessed teachers scattered hither and yon, receiving full salaries, at a cost of tens of millions of dollars. Ideology over sanity.
Following the advise of Sir Michael Barber, the Klein Svengali, a Carthaginian strategy, destroy all that precedes you so that when you leave the past cannot be rebuilt.
They are mistaken: the word “Klein” will become a pejorative verb.