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Schenectady schools

Feds: Blacks, Hispanics treated differently

Elmer Avenue Elementary School students, leave the school at dismissal Wednesday.
Photographer: Peter R. Barber
Elmer Avenue Elementary School students, leave the school at dismissal Wednesday.
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Black and Hispanic children who misbehave are treated far differently than white children in some Schenectady classrooms, the federal Office for Civil Rights said Wednesday. The office, part of the federal Department of Education, was called in to investigate claims non-white Schenectady children were not given the same opportunities in school as white children. Read the school's agreement with the Department of Education on the Capital Region Scene blog Investigators found 14 teachers who treated ...


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comments

rpterry
October 30, 2013
5:08 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

How can OCR know the facts are true and the circumstances identical?

smithmi41
October 30, 2013
6:29 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

rpterry...I suspect someone told OCR. How about the special education teachers... now that wasn't that hard..was it?

birmy
October 30, 2013
8:42 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

To be chosen for special education a full committee, parents, teachers (plural), special ed. chair, administrative chair in special ed., school psychologist, must sign off on it based in part on results of exams administered by the school psychologist. These exams cover the gamut including reading and writing abilities etc. "Similar academic and behavior problems" does not equate to similar psychological exam results which can show if a student has a learning deficit. It "looks bad" if only students of color are referred in the small sample provided, regardless of whether or not if they are the ones who deserve the modifications that special ed. services provide. OCR wants to make things "look better" IMO. In an elementary school in Schenectady there might be 60-100 teachers. They found 14 that only referred students of color for special ed. services. Hmmm. This does not seem shocking if we look at proficiency levels statewide for that population as well as graduation rates.

reader1
October 31, 2013
7:17 a.m.

[ Flag Post ]

birmy - so you know better than the people who conducted the investigation?

Supt. and teachers don't appear to be disputing the findings and the actions of the teachers do not seem to be racist or malicious. Seems more of an issue related to professional development and affording the teachers and students more resources.

Perhaps, you want things to "look better" by dismissing the findings?

cfield
October 31, 2013
7:18 a.m.

[ Flag Post ]

of all the articles kathleen moore has written, this possibly could be the most damaging. GET THE FACTS BEFORE YOU START WRITTING!!!

tonijean613
October 31, 2013
9:27 a.m.

[ Flag Post ]

HOW SAD that this is happening (in 2013) by the very teachers that are supposed to be setting an example and protecting such students from such treatment. Larry Spring is the best thing to happen to the Schdy Schools- HE GETS IT! He understands POVERTY and Discrimination and what that means for students and the psychology behind it. I hope the teachers guilty of this are swapped out for ones that truly have a sensitivity to this. I trust Larry Spring will take correct action and deserves our praise and thanks for tackling such a difficult district and more importantly for showing how much he cares about the kids.

rsmall803
October 31, 2013
12:47 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

Misbehaving doesn't equal special education in probably 90% of cases. Most who misbehave bring their home life to school.

poorlaw
October 31, 2013
2:20 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

This is such a disgrace. I think that those teachers should be fired. If it was the other way around you could have been sure the teachers would have been fired and possibly charged with something. This COUNTY SUCKS!!!!!!

wmarincic
October 31, 2013
2:43 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

I wonder why Mike S is not weighing in on this one?

newsjunkie
October 31, 2013
4:16 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

HA!"Larry Spring is the best thing to happen to SCSD"- I needed a good laugh today. The public has no idea actually what actually goes on in these schools.

This article is just another slam on the district. Let's find another district to rip apart for tomorrow's issue.

MikeJSilvestri
October 31, 2013
5:35 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

Because I was waiting on this to best provide clarity http://www.schenectady.k12.ny.us/News/20...
It paints a very different picture...

ThePhilistine
October 31, 2013
5:52 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

K Moore should look into all the violence bullying and crimes that gets swept under the rug by the school district to limit the number of reportable incidents in schenectady

wmarincic
October 31, 2013
6:50 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

So the response from the school district and Spring say's that teachers can't control the minority students so they send them to special ed classes. Am I reading that right?

wmarincic
October 31, 2013
6:54 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

BTW, I'm not saying that's a bad thing, if a kid continues to disrupt a classroom then a teacher needs to take steps to take control of the situation so that those who want to learn can learn.

MikeJSilvestri
October 31, 2013
8:01 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

The response is that as reflective professionals educators were doing their best for their students and they use d what they have learned in order to improve their practice and are continuing to do so.

birmy
October 31, 2013
10:19 p.m.

[ Flag Post ]

Reader 1- in response to your comments directed at me.

"Investigators relied heavily on student progress reports to determine whether teachers treated their students fairly." Progress reports are the sentence long comments parents receive with the student report card. Most districts have a maximum of 3 comments a parents can receive. "Is passing." "Satisfactory." "Is a pleasure to have in class."

LOL. Investigation of the century it sounds like.

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