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December 10th, 2010

Student Response to News of New Park Slope High School

The addition of a replica of Millenium High School, a selective Manhattan high school, into the John Jay High School complex in Park Slope is inspiring mixed reactions from students, teachers and administrators at the schools already in that building.

In an article in her school newspaper, Cheidy Perez, who is currently a student at the Secondary School for Research (one of the schools in the John Jay High School complex in Park Slope, Brooklyn ) reacts to news that Millenium 2 is going into that building in the Fall of 2011. Click on read more to read an excerpt from her remarkable article.

“Our teachers heard about the 4th school not even six months ago, and you would think that making a new school takes time, and it does, but this seems like it’s been confirmed long before any information got out to our teachers, students, or parents. Rahsan Williams, an ELA teacher at the Secondary School for Research,was asked how she felt about the changes.. She stated that “the building is in such bad shape and is need of repairs. This should happen without a 4th school coming in.Students here deserve to have those improvements and it is a slap in the face to our current black and brown population if it takes a new school to get these improvements.”

“There are many negatives to this so-called “proposal” but some positives. When M2 does arrive, the building will get the repairs it needs. However, the majority of the money will be given to M2 because they are a new school and need that money to start up. This also includes an extra $120,000. That extra money will be used for their purposes only. This also goes deeper than money. Think about the feed back that this school will be getting from this neighborhood. They are obviously going to prefer this “elite high school” (as said in the Daily News) than the schools that have been here for many years with a “checkered reputation”.

“The reason that is given as to why our building is chosen to be put into this situation is because our building is currently “under-utilized.” Currently, we have 1477 students enrolled in all 3 schools. The Department of Education lists a target building capacity, or “Footprint,” of 2,104 students. Because we are 627 students short, the DOE decided to put a new school in John Jay Campus.  Even if by fall 2011 we get 627 students enrolled, M2 will still come in.

“There might be a better reason or a more accurate reason as to why this is happening in the John Jay building, but it seems to be happening. It’s not the incoming students fault, so let’s not blame them. Let’s show them that we’re not as bad as they make us seem.

“Instead of sugar coating it, lets call it what it is: An attack on under-privileged students. Let’s fight back, and prove the DOE wrong.”

You can read the rest at Spirit Gazette.

Posted in Civics and Urban Life | 12 Comments »