eschs.jpgPolice arrested the principal of Eastside Community High School yesterday after getting in a confrontation with school security officers who were attempting to arrest an honors student. The incident began when a 17-year-old Isamar Gonzales entered the school early (7:55AM) and school security officers told her to leave. She refused and was eventually arrested for hitting one of the officers in the face.

Principal Mark Federman asked that the student be led out of a less public side door rather than the front door where the student body was assembling at the start of the day. When they refused, Federman allegedly pushed one of the guards and was arrested. Both principal and student were led from the school in handcuffs - out the front door. Gonzales' mother said, "They got her in handcuffs when she's supposed to be learning." Another parent also said that a security officer grabbed Gonzales' hair.

The City Council is coincidentally holding hearings on who holds the ultimate authority within city schools: principals or school safety agents, who operate under the jurisdiction of the police department. Critics have accused safety officers of escalating behavioral problems in school to criminal acts. Gonzales was charged with assault and Federman was charged with resisting arrest and obstructing governmental administration. The 37-year-old principal has held his position at the school for seven years and is reportedly popular with students and teachers (one student told the Times, "His jokes are corny, but he cares for this school.").