"During the past year, I've heard from a number of teachers and parents about very disturbing things happening at P.S. 29, and the considerable slide in academics that began when Principal Jones-Rogers began her tenure there," Graziano said. "Intimidation, harassment and punishment seems to be the norm in her behavior towards the teachers in her school. Anyone - whether teachers, parents or students - who disagrees with Principal Jones-Rogers is treated horribly, with teachers given a "U" or unfavorable rating, students removed from classrooms and placed in Special Eduation or expelled from the school and staggering disrespect towards the parents. Additionally, the continued misallocation of funds meant for the students, including the dismantling of a computer lab that Senator Avella funded when he was a Councilmember and over $100,000 payed out to "consultants" who have done absolutely nothing to help school performance is completely unacceptable."
P.S. 29 used to be a very high-achieving school, one of the best in School District 25, according to Graziano.
"Since Principal Jones-Rogers tenure began, P.S. 29 has become one of the lowest performing schools in the 19th Council District," Graziano stated, "which is absolutely tragic, as it's hurting our future: our kids. It's happening to a greater or lesser degree across School Districts 25 and 26 and jeopardizing the future of these neighborhoods as, historically, young families have moved here to send their kids to the best schools in the city, among other things.
"This slide in educational achievement is substantially due to Mayoral control of our schools through the Department of Education, which has removed what schools are supposed to be about - teaching and learning. It has been replaced by a corporate model that seems intent on wanting to make our public schools fail so they can be replaced by privatized charter schools and other 'educational alternatives.' This is why I have called for an immediate ending of Mayoral control of our schools and a reconstitution of the Board of Education in modified form, which would emphasize local control with significant parental input in the decision-making process for our public schools in northeast Queens."