The principal at a New York City high school who was accused of trying to oust white teachers is facing backlash from students who say that her leadership has created a “miserable” environment of “utter disorganization and insanity” as a result of “super underqualified” teachers and staff members and that they fear for their safety.
Paula Lev who presides over the High School for Law and Public Service in the city’s Washington Heights area came under fire last year for her discrimination against white teachers, leading to a probe by the NYC Department of Education after she allegedly told a faculty member that she “was going to get rid of all these white teachers that aren’t doing anything for the kids of our community,” according to a complaint which said “She definitely has something against white people,”
Now the embattled Lev is faced with a petition from students that calls attention to her “woke” purge that displaced staff members who were “fully experienced and qualified” in favor of those who are clearly inferior and not up to the job, at least according to those who are most affected by her managerial philosophy.
The petition which was posted to the website Change.org by student Angel Dilawar states, “Many students at the High School for Law & Public Service would like to bring to your attention that we have had enough and cannot bear to witness the utter disorganization and insanity at our school, especially that we once proudly called home.”
“The school community of High School for Law & Public Service has been experiencing challenges, and the lives of our students and teachers have become miserable. It is unfortunate that we have some new teachers that are super underqualified, and staff members that were fully experienced and qualified were excessed.” the petition reads. “It has been our experience that the lack of knowledge of a few new staff members has affected our learning. It is frightening to imagine more similar staff members being hired who require student assistance to accomplish simple tasks. What’s even more scary is that those are some vital positions.”
In addition, the petition says, “The environment is so dangerous on our floor because of the insane number of fights, constant arguing, and improper administrative action, that we do not feel comfortable or safe going to school.”
Lev is also criticized for prioritizing the visual appearance of the school when money could be better used for new laptops, textbooks and hiring more teachers.
“From the outside it may appear that everything is going great, but in reality, none of the members of the school community are aware of what’s going on. I compare it to a bad apple, gleaming and shining on the outside but once opened you see how rotten to the core it is.”
The 17-year-old Dilawar told the New York Post that “Lev has wasted money on frills like hallway TV monitors and $50,000 worth of hoodies to go with school uniforms that no one wears. Meanwhile, violence has increased.”
“Right now students can do anything they want and they’re not going to get in trouble,” she said.
Another student said that “Lev even created divisiveness during a recent Culture Day celebration to promote diversity. When Maldonado asked for a greater musical variety to be played at the cafeteria event, Lev said in Spanish to the DJ to play one other song — and then to “go back to Spanish music,” the student recalled,” according to the New York Post. “I was told that the student government curated a playlist to be inclusive to all of our cultures,” said 16-year-old Hannah Maldonado, who speaks Spanish.
“Certain teachers are completely clueless and students can provide many examples that demonstrate there is no communication at all. There is always last-minute notice for students and they feel that they don’t matter and are always silenced. As students from the High School for Law & Public, we are discouraged and prohibited from standing up to faculty and expressing our opinions,” the petition adds.
“We are deeply dismayed to see this unfold at a school that had been blossoming before this principal took over. Happiness, pleasure, and contentment have now become filled with tears of agony and sorrow. Many of ‘our teachers and administrators’ whom we truly valued, are now gone.”
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