[Rushtalk] School principal bans Santa, Thanksgiving and Pledge of Allegiance
John A. Quayle
blueoval57 at verizon.net
Mon Feb 15 17:29:50 MST 2016
Time to riot.................
At 01:40 PM 2/15/2016, Carl Spitzer wrote:
>Santa Claus is banned. The Pledge of Allegiance
>is no longer recited. Harvest festival has
>replaced Thanksgiving, and winter celebrations
>substitute for Christmas parties.
>New principal Eujin Jaela Kim has given PS 169
>in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, a politically correct
>scrub-down, to the dismay of teachers and parents.
>We definitely cant say Christmas, nothing with
>Christmas on it, nothing with Santa, PTA
>president Mimi Ferrer said administrators told
>her. No angels. We cant even have a star
>because it can represent a religious system, like the Star of David.
>Kim, 33, did not return a call or e-mail seeking comment.
>A memo last month from assistant principal Jose
>Chaparro suggested a harvest festival instead
>of Thanksgiving or a winter celebration instead
>of a Christmas party. He urged staff to be
>sensitive of the diversity of our families. Not
>all children celebrate the same holidays.
>Ninety-five percent of the 1,600 kids at PS 169 are Asian or Hispanic.
>In a recent directive to all schools, the city
>Department of Education said it permits holiday
>symbols including Christmas trees, kinaras
>(candleholders for Kwanzaa), dreidels, Hanukkah
>menorahs and the Islamic star-and- crescent.
>Displays that depict images of deities,
>religious figures or religious texts are prohibited.
>In a memo to staff this month, PS 169 business
>manager Johanna Bjorken added: In case you are
>wondering about grey areas: Santa Claus is
>considered an other religious figure.
>But a DOE spokesman told The Post that Santa is allowed as a secular figure.
>Santa was a part of the holidays at PS 169 for
>years. Joseph Iorio, a longtime assistant
>principal and the acting principal who preceded
>Kim, recalled state Assemblyman Felix Ortiz
>visiting the school dressed as Santa many times.
>Iorio also said he tapped student leaders to
>lead the Pledge of Allegiance every Monday
>morning. When Kim arrived, the school-wide pledge ended.
>A DOE spokesman said classrooms can recite the
>pledge at the teachers discretion. But PS 169
>teachers said that Kim never told them they could do so.
>Kim has other wacky priorities, school sources
>say. Soon after joining PS 169 in May 2014, her
>first time as a principal, she ordered the
>faculty to clear their classrooms of clutter.
>She moved hundreds of books and loads of
>supplies into the gym, where parents and other
>community members took what they wanted. The rest was tossed in the trash.
>She also dumped boxes of newly purchased reading
>books in the basement because she preferred another curriculum, staffers said.
>Kim bought seven 70-to-80-inch Sharp flat-screen
>smart TVs, which retail at about $3,000 each.
>After painting over and removing historic
>murals, she had the TVs mounted in the
>auditorium three over the stage and two on each side.
>It was ridiculous, Ferrer said. They have never been used.
>Kim holds a lottery for students to get academic
>assistance after school or on Saturdays. She
>also started a professional learning period in
>which teachers observe each other in class, but
>it eliminates one period of core instruction a
>week for students, staffers said.
>Kim recently told staff that Chancellor Carmen
>Fariña praised PS 169 at a town hall meeting.
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