Board of Education, Do Your Job!

Testimony of Stephanie King to the Board of Education , September 23, 2021

My name is Stephanie King and I’m a parent At Gen. Philip Kearny Elementary School. There are so many things wrong with the start of this school year that I hardly know where to begin.  

The part where you forced dozens of schools into unfavorable start times to facilitate a bus schedule that STILL DOESN’T WORK and has left students stranded and scrambling all across the city. 

The part where you have failed to keep our children safe from COVID with haphazard quarantine requirements and a COVID tracker that didn’t have student numbers until September 17. Some schools don’t even have tests. We are literally flying blind. 

The part where you put out a calendar to give Friday half-days after THE YEAR HAS ALREADY STARTED, Or calling a 2-hour delay after students are already there. That’s not how schedules work. 

So I need to ask: how many “we need to do better” op-eds and speeches need to be performed before anybody is actually held accountable. If any single person on this board actually had any integrity, you would be demanding changes and resignations.  

Your job is to oversee this school district and superintendent. You are failing. No one is accountable. You are lapdogs for this superintendent and instead take every opportunity to blame teachers for not implementing whatever cockamamie scheme some edu-consultant sold you, while the hardest you ever hold this administration to account is to ask for another powerpoint.  

I actually like Goals & Guardrails and find the data interesting and useful. And none of the data means a damn thing if this district can’t even figure out the nuts and bolts of opening a school building and adequately staffing it. That means enough teachers for your nonexistent COVID protocols, enough nurses to give the tests you haven’t supplied, anything besides crossing your fingers and hoping. 

You say you want to focus on achievement, but nobody can focus on achievement – not teachers, students, or parents – when we are too busy fighting YOU. 

WE NEED YOU TO HELP US. . We need this board to do your job because the people in 440 aren’t.