It is a well-known fact that the teachers in the United States earn way less than their counterparts in the rest of the world. However, it now seems that along with appropriate wages, Americans are also not paying them enough respect.
Recently, the teachers in a New York school were ordered to remove their desks from the classes – because apparently, they do not need to sit in order to do their jobs. Each of the teachers also had to empty out the filing cabinets of their personal belongings and classroom equipment before pushing all the furniture out into the hallway.
Perhaps what is worst about this “dehumanizing” incident is that the orders came directly from the school principal, who instructed janitors and custodians to haul the desks out, and pile tem atop each other alongside the trash and garbage.
Donna Connelly – the principal at PS 24, the Spuyten Duyvil School in Riverdale, Bronx – has provoked the ire of the teachers by enforcing the new “no-sitting” policy. The classrooms in the elementary school, where diverse students reportedly perform well above the city average on state exams, currently do not have any desks or cabinets. However, the chairs are still present.
“It’s the 21st century -- you don’t need desks,” said Connelly said, according to The New York Post.
Apparently, when the teachers inquired as to where they should grade papers, Connelly told them to use the lunchroom. As far as storing school supplies go, the teachers were told to “figure it out.”
As The Post reports, the principal demanded the teachers clear out their desks while the class was in session, which means the children watched as teachers had to remove student paperwork and children’s medication from the drawers.
“All their stuff is in boxes, bags and on the radiators,” a source said. “The kids saw their teachers upset about what was going on. It was dehumanizing.”
The photos of the discarded desks soon attracted attention on social media, where hundreds criticized Connelly’s unexplained rule. The news soon reached District 10 Superintendent Melodie Mashel, who ordered the school to place the desks and cabinets in the classes. However, instead of going back to its rightful place, the furniture was then stored in the school’s basement.
While it is not clear what prompted the principal to take such drastic measures, most people on social media accuse the educator of making a terrible power move.
“Thirty years in the system and I’ve never seen anything like this,” one teacher wrote, while the other responded, “How the f--- does someone with so little good sense become a principal? What kind of policy allows this to happen?”
“She is nuts!” posted another.