Failed “Turnaround” Program At John Dewey High School Endangers Student Learning


The situation at John Dewey High School continues to spiral out of control, to the detriment of longtime staff and of course, the students.

The New York Post ran an article that highlights some of the frustrations students are facing since the failure of the proposed “turnaround” program.

High-achieving senior T’kari Fisher, who earned a coveted spot in Advanced Placement English last year, returned to school only to realize that the class was cancelled, along with other invaluable AP courses like psychology and calculus.

Gone also are Italian, Russian and French language classes, with only Spanish and Chinese as the remaining options.

“Now I’m just here for the credits. I’m not getting much out of it,” Fisher said to The Post.

“I asked for science — marine or space. They put me in stagecraft and dance,” said another senior Babken Mkrtchyan.

Resource rooms stand empty, musical equipment collects dust and the true victims of this screw-up are the students who are losing valuable education time and confidence that things will ever really get back to normal.

Mayor Bloomberg plans to appeal this summer’s legal decision that blocked the school’s name change and the rest of the turnaround program from taking root, but that didn’t stop teacher’s from receiving pink slips and parents taking their kids elsewhere.

In fact, Dewey’s 2012 enrollment dropped by 400-500 students, most likely due to the uncertain standing of the school. Then, their budget was cut, 13 teachers were let go and 10 retired. For sure, this makes for an unstable and confusing learning environment.

“It feels like a junior-high experience,” said senior Patricia Ansah. “It’s pretty mediocre.”


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