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Thursday, May 03, 2007

Funny...Sort Of

Gotta love this letter, sent out to the parent body of a Staten Island middle school by the school's dean (click to enlarge), regarding punishment for students involved in a food fight:
Obviously, some of the misspellings were common typos ("an" in place of "and" or "on"), but the misspelling of the word "unacceptable" as "unexcecpable" is...well, unacceptable, from a dean of a middle school. Also, I would be willing to let "activates" in the place of "activities" pass as a typo once...but it appears twice in the letter. As amusing as the numerous egregious spelling errors all are, the part that troubles me far more is the fact that this dean chose to level a collective punishment on the entire grade that seems so far out of proportion to the crime:
After discussing with our Principal Mrs. DellaRocca we are now holding the entire health academy out of all senior activates (including prom and senior trip). It makes no difference if your child was directly involved or not, this is an action which affects the entire Academy.
If one of my children came home with a letter such as this, I would be hard pressed to support the school's administration. A parent in the school puts it succinctly:
Rajiv Gowda, the father of an eighth-grader and the president of the local Community Education Council, called for Levy's firing.

"This sends a bad message and sets a bad example," Gowda said. "We are for zero tolerance when kids make a mistake. What is good for the goose is good for the gander."
Luckily, the principal mentioned in the letter agrees, and is not happy with Levy's actions:
In addition to at least 16 spelling or grammatical mistakes, the letter - first reported in the Staten Island Advance - was never approved by Principal Emma Della Rocca.

"I would never have anticipated that ... Mr. Levy would actually write something that would have not been readable," Della Rocca said.

She's investigating both the letter and the food fight that started it all. Though the letter told parents that all eighth-graders in the health academy - one of three theme-based academies in the school - would be punished for Monday's food fight, Della Rocca said only kids found responsible will be disciplined.
At least sanity still prevails - if only some of the time.

20 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Note that not all the typos are highlighted.

3:53 PM  
Blogger Carrie said...

I just love the handwritten "parent signature" in that big, round teenage-girl handwriting. I had several high school age girls work for me (in a retail store) and they ALL had that handwriting. They also all spelled potato with an "e" at the end. Doesn't Dean Levy know that if you hire teenagers to work for you, you have to proof everything they do?

4:37 PM  
Blogger DAG said...

I had a prof when working on my M.Ed who highlighted any error, no matter how small, in his students work. He felt it almost a divine imperative, as he knew his students would end up teaching the next generation.

8:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymiss said...

Bizarre things have been known to happen: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB117760330348583547-search.html

2:12 PM  
Blogger Tzipporah said...

Lament. Lament. Lament.

ah, the passing of the era when correct spelling and grammar were commonplace.

2:52 PM  
Blogger frumhouse said...

Wow! I can't believe that these racist flyers are permitted! What has the world come to?

7:56 AM  
Blogger YMedad said...

I can recall Yoggi-Berra-isms at my Yeshiva High School - to be unmentioned to protect the guilty:

You are suspended indefinitely for three days.

I want to see your mother, your father or one of your parents tomorrow in my office.

Ah, the good old days before SMS and email English took over.

3:36 PM  
Blogger triLcat said...

unbe-smurfing-lievable!

I mean, come on!
Plus, hello, hasn't anyone ever heard of getting the kids down there and telling them to clean up?!

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