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Archive for July, 2008

Brearley\'s middle school commencement ceremony

Elitist Brearley School, in the Upper East side in New York, brags about academic excellence it offers its only-girl population of students. Lately though, academic excellence is taking a toll on the neighborhood. The Brearley School is expanding its science facilities on 83rd street, and evicted tenants are invited to accept – Uptown, where I used to live, or in the Bronx- that their fate is for good, for the blossoming of all these scientific minds in formation.

My girls are Brearley’s students. However, I had no say in the decision to send my girls there. Chloé, my little one, told me that she was a Brearley’s student during a supervised visit, sometimes in 2003. Later I learned from a parent of a Cathedral School student which Camille used to go to, that Camille had been accepted to Brearley too. Yet I confess I sympathize with the evicted tenants: I too had a taste of Brearley’s arrogance. I only met personally with the “bouncer” of this noble institution, and this 2007 encounter was not nice. I told him that I had come to request an interview with the teachers of my girls. The bouncer acknowledged he had no doubt I was Camille and Chloé’s father – the common curly hair- but I had to leave the premise anyway.

I then phoned Stephany Hull’s, Brearley’s headmistress. I again requested an interview with the teachers alleging the verbal authorization given to me Judge Sturm, who handles my endless child abuse case in family court. Request denied. Why? Hull gave me the chiropractor’s answer to George Constanza, in Seinfeld: “It’s policy. It’s policy not to invite the non-custodial parent to teacher’s conferences.” I asked her to put the glorious reasons supporting such policy in writing, so that I could show them in Court. She never did.

Recently I solicited in writing the same request to Tara Elsbach, director of the Middle School, with a May 2008 Court order stating my right to attend parent-teacher conference, with or without the consent of the custodial parent. I am still waiting for the answer.

According to Brearley’s “definition of a “well-rounded education”, “balance is an important educational principal”. Who are they trying to fool? Unwelcome non-custodial parents and evicted tenants in the surrounding community ?

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