Maspeth High School in Queens, where a grading-fraud scheme occurred. Helayne Seidman
The Issue: A report confirming that students received fraudulent passing grades at Maspeth HS in Queens.
The cheating at Maspeth HS is simply an egregious example of the grade compromises that ensue at most city high schools (“DOE is setting kids up for failure,” Editorial, Sept. 19).
In 48 years of teaching in New York City schools, I’ve witnessed an epidemic of various forms of rewarding failing and truant students with passing grades.
When I taught social studies at Hillcrest HS in Jamaica, Queens, back in the 1980s, I was always pressured by my department chairman and the principal to pass students who did absolutely nothing in class.
Teachers today are under pressure by the administration to pass as many students as possible. Untenured teachers often fear they won’t be granted tenure if their failure percentage is too high, so they pass anyone in class who shows up.
After the scathing report on Maspeth HS and seeing what takes place at the Department of Education, perhaps it’s time to “defund” the massive, bloated DOE and “reimagine” the whole system to one where it educates children in reading, writing and arithmetic without political or racial bias.
So long as schools are held solely responsible for student performance as children and parents shirk their duties, there will be incentives to award credits to the undeserving.
If schools do not graduate students, they will face most severe sanctions. This is akin to a doctor being held responsible for a patient’s weight — though she or he can advise, but the patient has to take corrective measures.
Why is it that politicians on both sides of the aisle refuse to hold parents and the community to task for their role in their children’s education?
So we’ve gone a complete 180 degrees from the Joe Clark days with this fiasco at Maspeth HS. There is so much that is wrong with this egregious case that I’m not sure where to begin.
The school administrators and the teachers involved should be immediately dismissed.
Where is the outrage from our public officials? How many students of every color have been handed worthless diplomas from these despicable “educators”?
Poor Mr. Clark, who commanded his staff’s and students’ respect, must be rolling in his grave.
Goodbye “reading, writing and arithmetic,” and hello “cheating, corruption and cronyism.”
It was reported that Masbeth HS created fake classes, fixed grades for failing students to graduate and counted students present and “passing” even when they were absent.
With the aid of two assistant principals, Principal Khurshid Abdul-Mutakabbir coerced teachers to pass students.
These highly paid phonies are guilty of “theft of services” from students, parents and New York City taxpayers.
City schools have been a cesspool for way too long without any cleansing. It’s time for education to be taken from politicians and union leaders and put in the hands of true educators.
It matters far too much to play games with children’s lives any longer. I say: “Charter schools for everyone!”
Under Mayor de Blasio, the Department of Education has gone haywire.
Having said that, speaking from experience I can unequivocally state that most kids know that their knowledge is nonexistent.
However, some of the in-denial parents don’t understand that their children are a flop. Part of raising kids is to work with them through their schoolwork — less and less each year, until they are self-sufficient.
Where are the responsible parents, the responsible teachers and the responsible administrators of Maspeth HS?
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