SOUTH BRONX SCHOOL: DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal, Puts PS 154 in the Bronx on LOCK DOWN!!!

Monday, July 29, 2013

DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal, Puts PS 154 in the Bronx on LOCK DOWN!!!

 For those that would like some background music whilst reading this post, please be sure to right click here so it will open up in new tab or window. Enjoy!

Tonight we have something that shows how one gets in over their head, one can't admit they were wrong, how one can't lead, and one is out of touch with reality. Yes, it is time to play, "this shit can't
be made up!"

And tonight's subject of TSCBMU none other that DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal, or in this instance, PhD and Warden of PS 154 in the Bronx.

Back in March, the beginning of March, give or take a few days, there was a near riot within the confines of PS 154.

Now this riot was touched in these pages back on March 7. The riot, some would say a gang riot, pitted five 5th grade girls against a lone 5th grade girl. In fact, one of those girls from the group of 5 had become so agitated she picked up a pair of scissors and went after the lone girl.

But you ask, how could this be when PS 154 is known world wide of its state of the art school PBIS discipline code? From the March 23 blog post;
...Now remember before the tale is told, The Happy Good Time Emotion Response Place and School uses the most awesome as well and most excellent PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) system. The key to this system is the card. A student starts at neutral (white), they do well and the student gets a green then a blue card, and when you are a bad child you go from yellow to red. Got it?
But it had gotten to that point because the PBIS crud does not work. Especially not with the true cause of the problems in the 5th grade in this past school year. There were approximately 20-25 (some would say more) hard core extremely challenging students in that grade. For these students having their card on red was a sign on cred, a sign of respect, a sign that they are the "baddest." What happened to this students previously when having received a red card or their behavior was out of line? They were forbidden from going to an assembly, like a puppet show, or Santa, or the Easter Bunny.  But for someone suckling on a silver spoon and never having any wants in their live, how can one understand this?

So this day of the riots, there were several little riots out in the yard that day. Well, that was the last straw, for the next day DR Alison Coviello; PhD and Principal issued the ultimate punishment. LOCK DOWN!

Yes, it was lock down. Not only were the students prevented from changing classes (the teachers now changed classes), but the students had their specialty classes inside their classrooms, were not allowed to go to the bathroom alone, were not allowed to walk the halls at all, were not allowed to go to their IEP provider, were not allowed to go to the cafeteria, and were not allowed recess, and were not allowed to out of their classrooms. How long did this go on? For nearly a month.

Their lunches were brought up to them, as one who was in lock down in a jail cell had the trustee bring them their meals. Since there were about 75-80 students in the grade and all the classes were on the top floor, this meant someone had to haul all these lunches upstairs. What did the students receive most of the time? Peanut Butter and Jelly, milk, and a fruit? Where was the hot lunch? Aren't hot lunches required by law?

Why were the vast, vast, vast majority of the students, the ones who behaved, the ones who did not cause problems day in and day out punished for the actions of others?

Why for nearly a month were the challenging students not given a chance to redeem themselves or invited to redeem themselves (Readers, make a mental not of this for a future blog post to highlight hypocrisy)?

How did the parents feel about their children being locked down like a bunch of convicts on cell block 4? Were these parents notified? Was there any parental input?

Was the upper echelon of District 7 and Tweed notified of said action?

It never had to come to this. It never had to be.

No that old saying, "Would it play in Peoria?" How about this saying, "Would it play in Harrison NY?" No. Why? Because problems are solved the first time.


fyrikaos said...

Wow - talk about illegal activity! I don't even know where to start when it comes to how wrong this scenario is. Not being allowed to see the IEP providers is a serious offense, one that could land a HUGE lawsuit. I'm very surprised (or am I) that there wasn't a huge outcry from the parents within the school. While it seems that the parents were not informed of this lock down, I would assume at least a large portion of the students had to mention it to them at home. If my child had come home and informed me of this there would be a riot of epic proportions at my son's school, with a huge parent side and it would have been bad, and probably made the news, since his particular charter school seems to be newsworthy quite often whenever there is a rumble or a sneeze. I am curious though, with all of the negativity I read on this blog, with all the issues at hand both professionally and with the treatment of the students, why do you continue to teach at 154? I live right around the corner, and have had the pleasure of seeing many of the students there and how they and their parents behave on the street and around school. The majority are just your typical rowdy kids who are blowing off energy, but there is a good handful that seem simply out of control, and you can see by the parents behavior where it more than likely stems from. We opted not to send my son to 154 after I spoke with several teachers and parents who used similar phrasing you did in your March 7th post "but if students are supposed to feel happy at The Happy Good Time Emotion Response Place and School how can you feel happy when you feel unsafe?" - note here the "unsafe" part. My child is a very emotional child who suffers from anxiety issues, add to that the racial tensions I felt he would suffer (because he was already getting them on the street in the neighborhood when he tried to make friends with kids in the playground right behind PS 154), my husband and I opted to put our little blonde head green eyed son into a charter. He was already being bullied at age 4 by the same kids he would be attending school with just because he wanted to play with them on the playground - there was no way I was going to subject him to that long term while he was trying to learn. I suppose I just don't understand why there is so much animosity towards charters on this blog when we all want the same thing. A quality education for the children in a safe and constructive environment and a professional and healthy place for our cities teachers and staff to work and practice their craft. If I recall correctly, there is a charter school moving in with PS 154 this fall, Bronx Classical I believe it is. Do you and the other staff see this as a negative or a positive, especially in light of the new reports out that say a traditional public school tends to improve and do better education and behavior wise when a public charter moves in to share space? I don't think I have seen anything on here as of yet about the response to that. So I am just curious as to what you feel a good solution or a good starting point to fixing these obviously major issues at PS 154 would be, because although my children don't attend there, it is one of my neighborhood schools and I feel that they should be excelling and getting the help that the students and teachers need from the fares that is the PEP and DOE (and UFT).

Anonymous said...

When Jonathan Kozol came to the Bronx he gave a voice to the voiceless. At least for a while adminstrators were afraid to give second class treatment to schools in poorer neighborhoods. It seems that leaders who Bloomberg and some major
universities consider 'enlightened' have been taught that the rights of poor children, especially if they are children of color, take back seat to their educational ideas.