Yesterday's City Council meeting about the state of supplies in NYC public schools seemed like the meeting of the year, from what Gothamist can tell from the coverage. City Council Education Committee chairwoman Eva Moskowitz pushed the case that many schools were woefully underserved, especially in the toiletries areas, and deputy chancellor Kathleen Grimm repeatedly said that there was no supply problem ("I have never heard a complaint that a school does not have the stock."). The NY Times reported that Deputy Chancellor Grimm finally said to Moskowitz's battering, "Councilwoman, I don't know what language I have to speak [to say there is no supply problem]," to which Councilwoman Moskowitz said, "I don't know what language I have to speak. There isn't a sufficient amount of toilet paper, towels and soap in the New York City public schools." With the resurgence of high-living (boutiques, luxury condos, studios topping $1 million in Manhattan), it's sad that school kids can't even wash their hands.
Also notable was the parental participation in the meetings:
One parent, Melvyn Meer, described taking his 5-year-old son to use the bathroom at Public School 41 in Queens. Of four stalls, he said, two had no toilet paper or paper holders, and two had paper holders too high for his son to reach from the toilet.
Mr. Meer said that after he complained to the principal, toilet paper holders were installed, but that they were difficult to use because the paper did not flow freely.
The photograph at top left is of Mr. Meer and a toilet paper holder; it was taken by Newsday's Alejandra Villa and was accompanied by the imcomparable caption, "Melvyn Meer a parent of two children at PS 41 in Bayside shows the inadequate toilet paper system at his kids' school." Delores Allen, with great-granddaughters at PS 184, wore some toilet paper around her neck, because some school children are given "rolls on a string to wear around their necks" since toilet paper is guarded, lest it be used for play. She said, "It's degrading to children that they have to go back to their classrooms with their little bottoms soiled." Dude, Gothamist is totally going as a NYC public school student for Halloween next year: Spongebob t-shirt, toilet paper around the neck.