The Post's Sunday report detailed some of the alleged abuses taking place at PS 106 in the Far Rockaway neighborhood in Queens. According to the report, the elementary school does not offer gym classes or art classes, does not have the proper reading and math textbooks and does not hire substitute teachers. Instead, students at the school are made to watch movies all day, some sitting in rooms that are reportedly rat-infested and smell of “animal urine.”
“This school is a complete s- -thole, but nobody in a position of power comes to investigate. No one cares,” a community member told the outlet.
In response to the report, the city's new schools chancellor, Carmen Fariña, sent Deputy Chancellor Dorita Gibson to investigate the situation, according to Capital New York. Per CBS New York, Gibson spent the day meeting with the school’s principal, Marcella Sills, whom the Post largely blamed for the school’s woes.
However, until the two leaders work out a solution, students continue to attend the struggling school.
"Science used to be my favorite subject when it was there," PS 106 fifth-grader Heaven Talavera told WABC-TV on Monday. "But the science teacher left, and then there was no more science."
The story elicited strong reactions from people on Twitter.
Extra grateful this morning that my kid's school is so great after this horrifying story about PS 106 over weekend. http://t.co/vOlf5IEtQN
— Tracy Connor (@TracyConnorNYC) January 13, 2014
— Phil Goldfeder (@YPGoldfeder) January 12, 2014
PS106's child abuse isn't just the teacher's + principal's fault: it's also the fault of higher govt officials, silent parents, & community
— Krystle (@TarheelKrystle) January 13, 2014
And accountability. Every single fucking person associated with the administration of PS 106 in Queens should be fired immediately.
— Harry (@Tark31) January 13, 2014
Several years ago, a second-grader was sexually assaulted at the school, according to previous reports from the New York Daily News. In a lawsuit filed at the time, the family of the victim accused the school and Education Department of "fail[ing] ... to provide a safe and secure premises for learning free from danger."
Gibson is set to release a report on the state of the school next week, reports CBS New York.
UPDATE: Jan. 14 -- On Monday night New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña issued a statement regarding the conditions of PS 106. After speaking with Deputy Chancellor Dorita Gibson, Fariña said that "there is significant room for organizational improvement [at PS 106], but that classrooms are orderly, teachers are dedicated, and students are learning." She said that going forward, Department of Education officials will regularly visit the school to make sure organizational changes are being implemented.