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Thursday, November 20, 2014

Another Princpal Who Should Not Be Working At A Public School: David Fanning, Principal of A. Philip Randolph

From EdNotesOnline:

Exposing A. Philip Randolph High School Hack Principal David Fanning

Happy teachers make for happy students and a safe teaching environment makes for a safe learning environment. It is too bad Carmen Farina is not paying attention to a cascade of principals who are undermining the teaching and learning conditions in so many schools. I get stories every single day and have a backlog of posts on a number of schools.

Even experienced chapter leaders are under assault by principals clearly trained in tactics of divide and conquer - they isolate certain people and woo others. All while the UFT dithers and provides few weapons and support and barebones training. What is funny that because I get so many reports on these principals I can see the pattern of behavior and can advise people - the UFT does not teach this pattern of behavior and help people format a broad array of responses -- which includes a political response - but more on this aspect in future posts

Would you want to work for a guy who clearly has a stick up his ass

One key charge against Fanning is that he covers up incidents to make the school look clean and oppresses staff members who would report. Nothing reported, nothing fixed.

Here is a composite report from various sources on principal David Fanning and the school.

A. Philip Randolph High School was recently ranked by The Daily News as one of the best public schools in New York City.

This comes as a shock to anyone who attends the school, works there, or reads the news.  How can a school with three harassment and/or discrimination lawsuits filed against the school in the past two years--the first years of David Fanning's appointment as principal--be the best of anything?  

 According to the latest Learning Environment Survey, only about 40% of teachers feel safe at APRHS.

That's understandable when you consider that the principal is so negligent about safety that he didn't even seek medical attention for a student who was shot in the face with a bb gun in the classroom last year.  

 According to The Daily News, APRHS touts an array of advanced classes.  Talk to anyone from the school and you'll soon learn that all these supposed advanced classes are not offered.  Or at least certainly not recently or all in one year.  In the course of one year, students' agreement responses to the Learning Environment survey question, "Myschool offers a wide enough variety of programs, classes and activities to keep me interested in school" dropped nearly twenty percentage points.  Where is this supposed array of classes?

 And, again, it's not just the lack of a variety of classes.  There is a lack of safety and mutual respect.  This isn't just about teachers like Sonia Burke and Monte Kuhr, both of whom have filed lawsuits against the DoE regarding theirpoor treatment at APRHS.

This is also, of course, about the students.  A glance at should give you an idea.

"This is honestly the worst school in the city. I've been here for 4 years. Don't listen to what the "Student Government" person is saying, he's sugarcoating it. The school has a bunch of incidents all the time which are covered up all the time. There was a fire in the bathroom and wasn't reported, which smoke was all over the 2nd floor the school reported it as a false alarm. They also had a classroom whose boards where set on fire and the school called the janitors to put it out. Seriously if you love your kid, don't send them here. There is some staff that I absolutely love, Ramirez, Calcano, Lacera, Ross, Stone, Dermott, but that's it."
"The staircases smell like weed. Students go to school high. Students have sex in staircases. Students cut ALL THE TIME. Students are EXTREMELY rude. The classes get disrupted all the time. There are ALWAYS physical fights (At least once a week!). Not to mention the pranks that are far dangerous.

Because of this environment, it is almost impossible for any student to not follow these same steps. Many students have admitted that they started caring less about school once they enrolled to APRCHS. Even though the students can succeed academically (if they try to ignore the craziness), the behavior in this school isn't acceptable. It isn't a school where I would want MY child to attend."

"I don't recommend this school to anyone. I have been in this school for 2 years already and I absolutely hate it. I was really excited about it at first, but it's not a good learning environment for your kid. The staircases smell like weed, there are always students skipping class in the hallways, many students disrupt the class, and much more. There's also no respect towards teachers or students. A few weeks ago I was in my math class and a student had thrown a water balloon at my teacher. There was also the situation when a student had disrupted a class to shoot a student who was sitting in class doing his work. There was even a report on it.

 The students are absolutely out of control. They "twerk" most of the time. There is dealing of drugs going on. They are extremely rude to the adults. Due to the behavior of this school, I'm afraid that colleges might look at my grades and think that I only have good grades because I look good in front of those awful students. There are, of course, some very good students. But the majority of the students do not care about school and go to school to waste our time and theirs."

The student from the first comment makes a very good point.  "The school has a bunch of incidents all the time which are covered up all the time."  Indeed, this appears to be the case.  How else could APRHS rank as one of the best high schools in NYC?  Maybe the principal, David Fanning, got his covering up degree when he was an AP of Organization at Brooklyn Tech.  Anyone remember this?

The scandal at Brooklyn Tech about administration not reporting violence and robberies.

It appears Fanning comes from violence cover-up central.  If it's not reported it didn't happen, right?