Last week we noted that Baltimore students and teachers returning to school from the long holiday break were greeted with frozen classrooms and some that were even flooded due to busted water pipes. Not surprisingly, the conditions prompted backlash on social media as outraged parents questioned why their students were being forced to attend class in an unsafe environment.
“It was miserable. The kids had their coats, hats, and gloves on all day,” said Jesse Schneiderman, a social, studies teacher at Frederick Douglass High School.
One classroom at Frederick Douglass was completely destroyed, after flooding from a burst pipe rendered the classroom unsafe.
“A teacher in our basement, because her room is under the flooded classroom, lost all of her materials,” he said. “Other teachers had to teach in the library because their classrooms were too cold.”
Not surprisingly, the cold classrooms drew some harsh criticism from angry parents at a public meeting with the CEO of the Baltimore City Schools. Here’s more from Fox 45:
It was a heated meeting over cold classrooms with parents outraged with the system’s CEO and board commissioners under fire.
“You tell me you care! I don’t believe it because I’ve been here before the heating issue,” screamed one parent at commissioners in a packed board room.
“Stop it! All these (expletive) excuses,” she screamed.
It was a public outcry on the cold school crisis at the school board’s first meeting since several days of a deep-freeze gripped the city.
Meanwhile, Mike Pesa, a teacher at Patterson High said students and teachers deserve better. “There was a room that was 37 degrees at my school and students were expected to stay in class all day. You can’t learn in those conditions and it needs to change,” said Pesa.
On the upside, since Baltimore teachers have admitted to passing students who don’t even bother to show up for a single day of class for a whole year (see: “It’s Very Common”: Baltimore Teacher Admits To Passing Students That Never Showed For A Single Day Of Class), students should feel welcome to just stay home in the warm comfort of their living rooms and watch cartoons all day…
But this teacher says grade changing at Calverton goes much further than just taking a failing grade and making it a 60. Some students who pass, according to this educator, don’t even have grades because they’ve never showed up to class.
“There were students on my roster all year that I had never met, had never seen. On paper they passed my class and passed onto the next year.”
“I love my job and I love my students,” concluded the teacher. “I want to see the students at Calverton and other schools across the city, get a fresh start. And it’s going to be hard because the students are used to this now. But the students deserve better and our city deserve better.”