Business, Computer Applications and Entrepreneurship High School, and Law, Government and Community Service High School, both within the Campus Magnet complex in Cambria Heights, are being threatened with closure due to a D letter grade from the city based on academic performance.
The move would follow the ongoing phaseout of Jamaica High School and the planned but aborted closures of several other schools in Queens over the last year. While closure is far from definite, the two schools, along with two elementary schools and one middle school in Southeast Queens, are on a new list of troubled institutions the Department of Education is keeping a special eye on [see separate story].
Campus Magnet students interviewed this week about the possibility are not happy about the negative impact closure could have on them.
Sophomore Isaya Palacio, 16, called the threat “unfair,” saying, “A lot of kids want to pass and do well.”
Palacio said he heard of the possible shutdown through rumors spreading around the school, from both students and teachers.
He thinks a lot of the problems stem from allowing the troublemakers and students who don’t care about academic performance to stay in the school.
“Just kick those kids out,” he said.
He is unsure of what he will do if the closure does happen.
Armani Gregory, a 15-year-old from the school for Law, Government and Community Service, wasn’t surprised about hearing the ominous news for his school.
“There are fights, bad kids, kids in the class literally jumping off of tables, throwing food,” he said.
He agreed with his friend Palacio that getting rid of troublemakers could help, but that also more teachers should be hired.
If the school were to close down, he said, he might move and go to a school on Long Island, where he said he has family.
Jermaine Harriott, 18, a senior at Law, Government and Community Service, also believes his low-performing peers and their “attitude” is a reason for the low grade.
“There are just bad students,” he said. “They don’t want to learn.”