Following the release of Mayor Bloomberg's hit list of 19 schools that "just don't do the job," it behooves the ones who survived to shape up or face the impending municipal axe. Or, cut back on reporting things that would get you there. Parents and former employees of the Lower East Side's Marta Valle High School are claiming Principal Mimi Fortunato is attempting to play down the number of violent altercations and lax attendance policy to avoid closure. "See how I get a drink?" one truant student told a Post reporter outside the school. "If there was discipline, I'd be in class."
Fortunado tells the paper via email that the steep decline in suspensions (41 down to 16) from from 2009 to 2010 was due to her reform efforts. In 2008, before Fortunado because principal, the school was deemed "persistently dangerous“ by the DOE. "The compelling story here (and the accurate one) is an inspirational story about a small innovative high school that was previously considered unsafe,” the principal writes.
Not so, claims PTA President Linda Surles. This year, after a boy "beat the dickens out of a girl," he apparently received only a two-day suspension because the boy's father allegedly supported Fortunado. "Parents were not called. She didn't want the ambulances to be called," a former staffer said, referring to the incident. "I'm talking about a bloody, beat up kid."
- 90% Attendance
- Meeting NYCDOE and Marta Valle High School Expectations for Behavior
- Passing all Courses
- Earning a Minimum of 11 Credits Each Year
- Completing 60 Hours of Community Service
- Complying with the Marta Valle Dress Code for Success
- Earning a Total of 44 Credits
Hopefully those expectations of behavior include "picking your teacher up a Snapple from the bodega."