Archive for the tag 'sheepshead bay high school'

newvisions

Kudos to the kids from the New Visions Charter School for Advanced Math & Science III, one of the publicly-funded charter schools that moved into the Sheepshead Bay High School campus (3000 Avenue X) last fall. These kids took to the streets around the school last week, cleaning sidewalks and removing several garbage bags of debris and litter.

Here’s what the school’s COO Geri Molloy wrote to us:

Last Tuesday, March 18 2014 the entire New Visions Advanced Math and Science III community left our campus and went into the neighborhood to clean up. Armed with gloves and garbage, Scholars and staff collected over 60 bags of garbage from around the neighborhood.

Way to go!

Andre Civil

Andre Civil (Source: ScarletKnights.com)

Way, way back in the halycon days of May 2008, when Sheepshead Bites had just launched, the fourth story ever published on this site was about the recruitment of Sheepshead Bay High School (3000 Avenue X) football’s defensive end Andre Civil to Rutgers University‘s Scarlet Knights (also, my alma mater.)

Back then, the team was just beginning to rise after years of pitiful performance, and started making a name for itself. Fast forward three and a half years, and Rutgers University joined the Big Ten Conference, helping solidify its athletic excellence.

Civil, who took on the role of right-tackle after the NFL picked off a few of his colleagues, played a prominent role in the team’s surge in rankings, and he’s been embraced by the students and alumni, who’ve started packing the football stadium (during my years there, the school literally bribed students to go to games. On some days, it was the only place you could get a meal using the meal plan).

That spirit is a whole lot different than Civil is used to. A native of the Sheepshead Bay – Nostrand Houses, Civil notes that New York City dwellers’ indifference towards high school and college football spurred him to work harder.

The Trentonian profiled Civil, writing:

“First off, I think a lot of people don’t look at New York high school football as much,” said Civil, who mostly ran a Wing-T offense in high school. “You just kind of have a chip on your shoulder and want to show people you can play ball and compete with other states, especially New Jersey because New Jersey is known for football.”

Civil grew up right across the street from Sheepshead Bay and played football at the adjoining field. Some schools, like Flatbush’s Erasmus Hall, would have to commute through the borough just to get to practice.

He played games at noon every Saturday, like clockwork. Sheepshead Bay never played night games, despite having lights. Civil did not need them to turn on.

Check out the full profile here.

Sheepshead Student Jihad Teeba (center) (Photo courtesy of Brian Scios)

Sheepshead Student Jihad Teeba (center) (Photo courtesy of Brian Scios)

A Sheepshead Bay High School (3000 Avenue X) took home top honors at the 18th annual Quality of Life INNOVATIONS (QLI) Awards Ceremony. The QLI program, which invites students to tackle and attempt to solve real world problems, honored Jihad Teeba for her work in studying the hazardous effects of batteries that aren’t properly disposed of.

In a press releaes, QLI documented Teeba’s impressive work and research:

Jihad confronted the improper disposal of batteries and the impact this has on the environment and public health. Her extensive research included the hazards associated with button-cell batteries that are swallowed by thousands, including children, each year. 180,000 tons of batteries are discarded every year in the US. 81 percent of respondents to her student survey noted they have thrown out batteries in a garbage bin rather than a recycling container. Jihad’s solutions include creating drop-off sites in residential areas, an awareness campaign, and greater enforcement of existing New York State laws requiring merchants to accept used rechargeable batteries for recycling.

“Too many people fail to recycle,” commented Jihad. “They need better access to recycling boxes and drop-off centers.”

Congratulations to Jihad for her accomplishment and for helping raise awareness over proper battery recycling.

The NYPD’s bomb squad has been called to Sheepshead Bay High School at 3000 Avenue X, after authorities may have found what’s believed to be an explosive device in the basement of the school.

A call came over police scanners at approximately 10:20 a.m., saying that police were on scene with what appeared to be a “military explosive device” found in the basement. The officers on scene requested the NYPD’s Emergency Services Unit.

Readers, like Lisa M., have told Sheepshead Bites that the police presence is heavy and that the school has been evacuated. Lisa wrote:

tons of cops over at Sheepshead High today…kids amassed outside…the police in front of my house (on Batchelder St. near Ave.Y) told me there was a “threat to the school”.

Sheepshead Bites has not been able to confirm with the NYPD if an actual explosive has been found and confirmed. We will update as more information becomes available.

UPDATE (11:14 a.m.): It appears that other schools in the area, including P.S. 52 on Nostrand Avenue and Avenue Z have also been evacuated.

UPDATE (11:30 a.m.): An aide in the principal’s office answered the phone and said that everyone has returned to the building and she believes, but was not sure, that the police have left. She declined to provide details about the cause of the evacuation.

Sheepshead Bites is still awaiting a response from the NYPD’s Deputy Commissioner of Public Information and the 61st Precinct.

UPDATE (2:50 p.m.): The “explosive” turned out to be an old science experiment left in the building’s basement. The Daily News reports:

The NYPD bomb squad determined the device was a harmless World War II-era depth gauge, school officials said.

“It is thought this suspicious package may be a World War II relic that may have once been used in a very old science project,” Department of Education spokeswoman Marge Feinberg said in a statement.

Students were allowed back in the school within two hours, officials said.

This is a breaking news story and may contain inaccuracies. We will update it as more information becomes available. If anyone has more information or additional photos, please send them to tips (at) sheepsheadbites (dot) com.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

The Panel for Educational Policy, which has the final say on closing schools in New York City, voted last night to approve plans to phase out and ultimately shutter Sheepshead Bay High School and 21 other schools at the end of this semester.

Much like the closure hearing held earlier this month at Sheepshead Bay High School, opposition at last night’s meeting was thin compared to previous years.

The New York Post notes:

While hundreds of parents and teachers came to protest the move, the meeting wasn’t nearly as volatile as in past years, when thousands packed the auditorium and raucously taunted education officials.

… Before last night’s vote, far fewer elected officials spoke out than usual, the crowd thinned within hours, and even the head of the UFT sent his No. 2.

NY 1 reports that some of that scale down in opposition is because the UFT has “given up” on challenging Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s policies, and is now looking ahead to the new mayor. NY 1 reports:

This is the fourth year since a state law was revised to require that the panel votes on school closures, but since the majority of the panel is appointed by the mayor, the panel has approved every single one of the DOE’s proposals to date.

Of all of the DOE’s controversial policies, closing schools consistently generates the most vocal push back. Even if the outcome of the final vote is almost certainly assured, thousands of people show up to the meeting every year. Most are teachers, students or parents at the schools that are being closed, but the teachers’ union has also traditionally brought in hundreds of other members to speak out against the policy.

This year, the United Federation of Teachers has not organized a large protest for the first time. The union president said that he has given up trying to work with the current mayor to get anything done and is focused on the next mayor.

As many as 142 schools have been closed of phased out since Bloomberg took office in 2002.

In addition to closing Sheepshead Bay High School, the panel voted to approve the co-location of four new schools, including two charters, on the 3000 Avenue X premises. A “phase out” period in which no new ninth graders would be accepted to the school begins immediately. Current students would be allowed to graduate or transfer out over the next three years, and, beginning this September, a new public high school, two new charter high schools, and a district transfer high school would all be co-located in the same facility.

The charter high schools will both be managed by New Visions for Public Schools, a nonprofit that manages more than 70 schools across the five boroughs.

From a rally to save the school when it faced closure in 2010.

The Department of Education held a required hearing to “phase out” Sheepshead Bay High School (3000 Avenue X) last week, but the event drew a smaller crowd of about 80 students and faculty, as compared to hundreds in the previous attempts to shut it down.

It’s the third year in the row the city is trying to shutter the school – this time by replacing it with two public schools and two charter schools – and some school supporters say the teachers, students and parents have simply been beaten, broken and demoralized by the process.

If the plan to close Sheepshead Bay High School is approved, a “phase out” period would begin in which no new ninth graders would be accepted to the school. Current students would be allowed to graduate or transfer out, and, beginning this September, a new public high school, two new charter high schools, and a district transfer high school would all be co-located in the same facility.

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“Bullet Points” is our format for Community Board 15 meeting coverage, providing takeaways we think are important. Information in Bullet Points is meant only to be a quick summary, and some issues may be more deeply explored in future articles.

Neighbors Demand Board Rescind Support For Drug Counseling Center: Residents of East 17th Street near Kings Highway rallied at last night’s Community Board 15 meeting, demanding the Board rescind a letter of support for a proposed drug treatment facility at 1670 East 17th Street.

Led by Madison-Marine-Homecrest Civic Association President Ed Jaworski, a group of residents took to the podium, claiming that the Board failed to inform the community that the issue would be discussed and voted on in December.

“The City Charter and the Community Board bylaws say that the Community Board should serve the community, should communicate within the community, should act as a liaison agency, should review services, should develop plans for the community. None of this was done regarding the drug center being located on East 17th Street,” Jaworski said. “What took place at the November meeting was a shortcut. It was cutting the community’s input.”

The center, One World Counseling, received a letter of support from Community Board 15 in November with a 31-4 vote. Dmitri Oster, a rep for One World, told the Board then that they intended to target immigrants in the Sheepshead Bay area who have turned to drugs to cope with cultural integration. They would offer only counseling and would not distribute medication.

Keep reading about this story, and summaries of other actions from last night’s Community Board 15 meeting.

Source: 247sports

Sheepshead Bay’s Rashaad Coward is a 6’6″, 280-pound defensive tackling force and he is taking his football dreams to Old Dominion, according to a report by the New York Daily News.

As we’ve previously reported, Rashaad was weighing his options between the likes of Albany and Wagner College, before settling on Old Dominion.

Old Dominion, located in Norfolk, VA, has high academic standards for their student-athletes, making Coward mother’s pleased with her son’s decision.

“A lot of the players are good in the classroom and on the dean’s list, so she was happy about that, too,” Coward told the Daily News.

Fred Snyder, Coward’s coach, bestowed high praise on the future Old Dominion tackle, calling him the best lineman he ever coached.

“He had the size and ability and he worked hard to make sure what happened his freshman year when he got pushed around a little never happened again,” Synder said.

Coward is the first athlete out of Sheepshead Bay set to play Division I Football since Rutgers recruited Andre Civil in 2008.

Yesterday was Martin Luther King Day, and while many people stayed home and enjoyed their day off, others rolled up their sleeves and answered Dr. King’s Call for Service. Over 600 volunteers came to Sheepshead Bay High School to paint, cobble and clean for the 10th annual MLK Day of Service.

“The students and teachers that work here and attend school here, live in communities that were most affected [by Superstorm Sandy],” said Erica Hamilton, executive director of City Year New York, to CBS 2 News.

Among the good deeds performed by the volunteers, which culled together students and community members, were the painting of murals designed by students and the building of benches and bookshelves to help spruce up the Sheepshead Bay High School. They also painted handbags and made cards for special needs students.

The murals, all painted by students, reflected different themes including careers, performing arts and literature.

View the photos from the event.

Sheepshead Bay High School students protesting the city’s closure attempts in the last school year. (Photo: Robert Fernandez)

We reported in November that the New York Department of Education was once again looking to close Sheepshead Bay High School, including it on an “early engagement” list. This week, the school popped up on yet another list of low performing schools targeted for closure, according to an article in School Book.

The planned closing of Sheepshead Bay High has been fought for some time, and teachers and administrators have thus far been successful at keeping the school open despite mounting pressure from city officials. This time around, though, the DOE doesn’t appear to be pushing an immediate closure at the end of this school year, but “phasing out,” meaning no new students can enroll at the school.

According to School Book, the High School’s closing hasn’t shocked its staff:

Robin Kovat, a social studies and law teacher at Sheepshead Bay High School, said the announcement Monday did not surprise her.

“The D.O.E. has been trying to close us for nine years. They are finally succeeding. Even though we knew it was coming, it is still so sad,” Kovat said.

Sheepshead Bay was one of the high schools the city wanted to “turn around” this year. Despite a new principal and additional support systems, Kovat said one year was not enough time to demonstrate results.

“A lot of us put our hearts and souls into the school and into the kids and really know that we made a difference in their lives. You know, maybe the numbers aren’t reflecting that,” she said. “At the same time as our statistics are going down, we have rising stars. Seriously.”

Despite the disappointment from teachers and administrators, Deputy Chancellor Marc Sternberg and the DOE are taking a hard stance against struggling schools.

“We expect success,” he said in a statement. “After a rigorous review of academic performance, we’re proposing to phase out a select number of low-performing schools. We’ve listened to the community and provided comprehensive support services to these schools based on their needs. Ultimately, we know we can better serve our students and families with new options and a new start.”

UFT President Michael Mulgrew, though, called shenanigans on the idea that DOE provided comprehensive report, noting to School Book, “Large comprehensive schools like Lehman and Sheepshead Bay have been further undermined by DOE policies that led to increased concentrations of high-needs students, but with no increase in the services such students need.”

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