Monday, May 24, 2004

Voc Ed: Extra Credit for Asbestos Removal

You might think this was taken from the Onion or maybe an particularly sick episode of South Park.
A Brooklyn principal directed students and a teacher to tear down library walls and shelves even though he knew the room contained asbestos, then tried to cover up the incident, teachers union officials said yesterday.

Ivor Neuschotz, principal of Grady Vocational High School, received a letter of reprimand, a Department of Education spokeswoman said, with more disciplinary action pending an investigation.

Neuschotz ordered the work done last month after getting a $300,000 grant to renovate the library, but union officials say the costs have climbed to $500,000 for cleanup instead of a $90,000 asbestos removal.

They say everything in the library, including books and computers, will have to be thrown out, and they fear that other grants will be withdrawn.

"He said the abatement was too expensive," said Michael Mulgrew, the school's union rep. "It wouldn't allow him to do what he wanted to do in the library - cappuccino machines? I don't know."
A letter of reprimand? A bit harsh, don't you think?

What's next, asbestos abatement merit badge?