2010-06-04 / Letters

PEP Speech Ramifications

Dear Editor,

At January’s PEP meeting some people asked me if I was calling Chancellor Klein a racist. I am sorry for the confusion. Yes, I called the chancellor a racist then and I am calling him one again this evening.

As the proud parent of a National Hispanic Scholar and the past President of the Townsend Harris HS PTA I have seen this Chancellor force out a duly elected integrated PTA Board. The resulting all-white board immediately ended programs that ensured equal access to quality SAT prep in a school that is 60% stu- dents of color and 40% eligible for free and reduced rate “ lunch. This was proof positive of the Chancellor’s racism.

As the UFT Chapter Leader of Beach Channel, I have witnessed how this Chancellor tried to make over one hundred students of color disappear with his Educational Impact Statement. He callously provided no explanation on where or how English Language Learners, students with IEPs, and students with children would be educated on the Rockaway Peninsula. At a time when students were faced with the end of Metrocards he was apparently prepared to exile these students from their neighborhood schools. He was effectively prepared to replace our veteran Caribbeanborn principal – a professor of education – with a politically connected 29- year-old white female who has taught for less than two years. Only the strength of the NAACP and the UFT plus the wisdom of Justice Lobis prevented Klein’s racist decision from going into effect.

Now he wants to steal almost $5 million from my students – primarily students of color – to fund hiring of new staff through his puppet, the New Teacher Project, at a time when he has threatened over 6000 teachers with layoffs. The majority of the PEP supported the Chancellor’s racism in January. If you join with him again you are equally guilty of racism. You cannot simply state that you were following the orders of our imperial mayor – that excuse failed at Nuremberg in 1945 and it fails tonight. Vote NO on this boondoggle.

DAVID S. PECORARO

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