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Big Bucks, Little Brains

The principal of a Brooklyn, N.Y., middle school sent an e-mail to the school’s teachers that was so poorly written, it was leaked to parents, who are calling for his dismissal. Principal Andrew Buck of the Middle School for Art and Philosophy was defending his decision to not provide students with textbooks. In one passage, Buck, who is paid a $129,913 salary, wrote: “Text books are the soup de jour, the sine qua non, the nut and bolts of teaching and learning in high school and college so to speak.” But: “[J]ust because student have a text book, doesn’t mean she or she will be able to read it ... Additionally students can’t use a text book to learn how to learn from a textbook.” The e-mail had about 50 errors of grammar, spelling and/or logic. “The writing and logic are so confused I thought it was a joke,” said an English professor who was asked to review the message. Only 13 percent of the school’s eighth-graders passed state reading exams last year. (JW/New York Daily News) ...The e-mail: not a joke. The principal: a joke.
Publication Date: 21 November 2010
This story is in True’s book collection, Volume 17.

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