2011-02-11 / Front Page

Mother Outraged In Goldie Maple Incident

By Howard Schwach

The Goldie Maple Academy, which was formally Junior High School 198 stands in Arverne. A parent charges that the school’s principal has banned her from the building after she filed a formal complaint with the city. The Goldie Maple Academy, which was formally Junior High School 198 stands in Arverne. A parent charges that the school’s principal has banned her from the building after she filed a formal complaint with the city. A Rockaway mother has been barred by the principal from visiting her daughter’s elementary school without permission because, she says, she reported an earlier incident to the city’s 311 report system, angering the principal.

“Due to an incident that occurred today, Wednesday, 1/26/11, in which the school required the involvement of a School Safety Agent, I am establishing procedures [for your interaction with the school] effective immediately,” a letter to Christine Louis, whose daughter, Abigail, 7, is in the second grade at the Goldie Maple Academy on Beach 56 Street in Arverne, from Principal Angela Logan, said.

Those procedures included calling the office for an appointment before coming to the building, leaving and picking her child up at the security desk rather than in the classroom or dismissal points and calling the office before picking up her child.

Logan says that setting up the procedures was to “insure a safe and orderly environment” in the school.

Louis, however, says that she had been blackballed from the school because of an incident that occurred on January 19.

Louis says that Abigail’s teacher, Qianie Dolvin, noticed a mild rash on the child’s face.

When the teacher asked the secondgrader what the rash was, the child, whose relative had recently suffered from ringworm, said, “I think it’s ringworm.”

Louis said that the teacher told all the students to close their books and move away from Abigail because, “she was spreading the disease all over the classroom.”

In fact, Louis said, it was a mild case of eczema.

Her daughter, however, was teased and taunted for three days because of the teacher’s comment.

“She complained that nobody would be her partner on a class trip because the teacher said she was spreading ringworm,” Louis said.

On Friday, when she came home from school distraught because of her treatment by her schoolmates, Abigail told her mother what had happened.

Louis says she called the school and was told everybody had already left for the weekend.

On Monday morning, she says, she and her husband, Ralph, went to the school. They spoke with the parent coordinator and another staffer, but got no satisfaction.

They asked to speak with Logan, but were told that she was too busy to speak with them, but asked about the problem.

When she was told by an intermediary, Logan’s answer, according to Louis, was, “What do you want me to do about it.”

Angered about the perceived disrespect she got at the school; Louis called 311 and made a formal complaint.

Her husband called the school and made an appointment for January 24 to speak with the teacher and principal. The school secretary called back and said that the couple could come to the school on January 25 for a meeting.

When they showed up at the appointed time, however, Logan refused to meet with Christine, but did meet for a few minutes with her husband. She says that nothing was resolved and, when she asked why she was excluded from the meeting, she was told by Logan that it was because of the complaint that was filed against her.

When Louis complained, Logan called for a school security agent to remove her from the building.

“I was never allowed to speak with Logan or the teacher to express my concerns,” Louis told The Wave. “All I want is justice for my daughter.”

She added that after she got home that day she received a call from a district office worker who told her that her daughter’s case would not be investigated

“because of her disrespect for the principal.”

Margie Feinberg, a long-time spokesperson for the Department of Education told The Wave on Monday, however, that the mother’s “limited access letter” had nothing to do with her calling 311.

“The mother was ranting and refused to sit down. She was yelling at the principal,” Feinberg said. “The father met with the principal and as far as he is concerned, everything is resolved. The district superintendent will reach out to the mother to work out the problem.”

Louis says that nothing is resolved.

“I am looking for justice here,” Louis said. “Those people in the school have no respect for kids or their parents. That is not right for public school offi- cials.”

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