"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Newark's Top High School Students Occupy Cami Anderson's Offices

from Bob Braun:
A small group of Newark high school students Tuesday night seized the office of state-appointed superintendent Cami Anderson in a protest timed to coincide with her imminent re-appointment to another year, her fifth,  as head of the state’s largest school district. The action, which is continuing through the night, stands in stark contrast to the failure of Anderson’s older–and, theoretically, more powerful–critics to do anything to dislodge her from her post.

The operation was executed with an efficiency that has eluded Anderson’s control of the district. The dozen students and a few adult advisers pulled off the occupation of the suite of offices on the eighth floor while a public school board meeting droned on two floors above on the tenth floor. The students had attended the meeting and some spoke, hinting broadly they were about to do something, and then left in a group–but they weren’t going home to do their homework.

Newark students sprint down long eighth-floor hallway to get to Anderson's offices ahead of security officersNewark students sprint down long eighth-floor hallway to get to Anderson’s offices ahead of security officers.

The dozen or so students crammed into an elevator and pushed the 8th floor button, then sprinted to Anderson’s office, expecting all the while to be met with resistance from security officers. Instead, the office site was wide open and empty except for a puzzled janitor who, while mopping the floors, cautioned the students not to slip on the wet tiles. “Be careful,” he said, not quite sure of the intent of the visitors.

The students–many of them from the city’s vaunted Science Park High School–set to work establishing what amounted to a communications center where they broadcast their demands that Anderson resign immediately–for, among other reasons, her failure for a year  to attend board meetings, including the one the students had just left.
Read the rest here.

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