Feb 11, 2009

DC Students Say "Blood Was Everywhere" In Cardozo High School Rumble

Seems like DC Public schools draft discipline plan just released on February 3rd may be too little too late for Tuesday's brawl at Cardozo Senior High School. On Tuesday, sixteen students were arrested at Cardozo Senior High after a lunchtime melee. AP stories appeared on the Internet on this touchy subject mid-day on school violence and on the evening news and in local newspapers. In a WaPo Wednesday article , Paul Duggan reported that "More than a dozen students at the District's Cardozo High School were injured yesterday and 16 were arrested after a large group of girls began fighting in the basement lunchroom and several smaller fights broke out nearby, police and witnesses said." On the Internet, some students were quoted as saying "blood was everywhere."

While it was reported that most of the students injuries were minor, five students required treatment at area hospitals. One 17-year-old student was knocked to the floor and suffered a head injury and was unconscious as a result.

According to D.C. police Cmdr. Brian Jordan of the school security unit "...Evidently there was an incident that occurred after school (Monday) between some of the young ladies, and it spilled over into the school..." All indications are it might have occurred over something as minor as somebody pulling somebody's hair." He said officers assigned to Cardozo called for help about noon after they encountered "a large group of females engaging in just a big fight" in the lunchroom. Patrol cars from across the department's 3rd District converged on the school, in the 1200 block of Clifton Street NW. "As a result of the large fight, several other melees began to erupt" near the lunchroom and on the first floor, Jordan said."
It has been reported that of the 16 students who were arrested, one of the students was charged with misdemeanor assault on a police officer, two with aggravated assault and most of the rest with disorderly conduct. Even though classes resumed after the fights, officials had Cardozo students leave in intervals in order to prevent students from congregating after school was dismissed.
I think many would agree that a strong discipline policy for DC schools is needed sooner than later. What would you include in DC's Discipline Policy ? (Posted by The Washington Teacher). Article courtesy of http://www.washingtonpost.com/

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Is that a picture of Rhee's hands?

Macy said...

No one can argue with you anonymous. There certainly is blood on Rhee's hands in this case especially since it took her 17 months to come up with a discipline strategy. I wonder if anyone spotted Rhee at Cardozo on Tuesday ?

Anonymous said...

Love you, Candi, but we don't need a visual of blood. We get the picture. Thanx. It made me nauseous.

Anonymous said...

Rhee and Fenty are responsibile for the dismantling of Public Education in the District of Columbia they need to brought up on Civil Right's charges. Didn't Al Sharpton and Joe Klien visit Cardozo recently? They should have left a discipline plan instead of empty rhetoric.

The Washington Teacher said...

I am sorry but I got carried away with visual imagery.

Anonymous said...

I teach at Cardozo, and although the fights that took place on Tuesday were bad, they were nowhere near as bad as media reports made them seem. The reports made it seem like there was a riot. There wasn't, and there certainly wasn't "blood everywhere.'.

On another note: The problem stemmed from some altercations that took place outside of school on Monday night. The kids didn't get into a fight because of Michelle Rhee. As a teacher, if two students who were involved in gangs got in a fight in your classroom, you would probably agree that the fight isn't your fault. Just because the fight took place in DCPS doesn't make it Michelle Rhee's fault. Where the discipline policy comes into play is in what our response will be now that the fight has happened. If these kids are back in Cardozo in a week, it will send a very bad message to everyone else.

Unbelieveable said...

Cardoza Teacher,
Maybe it was my imagination running away with me that the news cameras arrived and the kids were still fighting outside. It's amazing that 16 children can get arrested and you call it another day at the job. (Nothing Big)One child knocked unconscious being loaded in an ambulance."Nowhere as bad as media made them seem". Media didn't say blood everywhere. One of the witnesses said it on television for everyone to see. Is Cardoza so out of control that your judgement is skewed? Ask the family of the young man who was put in an ambulance and taken to a hospital how bad it was? Please stay away from my child.

Anonymous said...

Unbelievable,
Let me clarify why I wrote what I wrote. The fights that took place at Cardozo were bad -- they were extremely violent and saddening. My point was not that they were acceptable. My point was that the situation at Cardozo was not what the media (and even some of the students, who, unfortunately, sometimes make things sound worse than they are) made it seem.

We have 900 students at Cardozo. 16 were arrested for fighting. When the media sends its crews to schools when they hear about violence , I think their main goal is to take pictures of angry black kids fighting. They want to hype up a stereotypical and often racist view of urban children. I spoke out against this sensationalism because I believe it unfairly biases our city against the 884 students who were not fighting, and were instead trying to get an education. Our students are hardworking, intelligent, thoughtful, and caring people. When some of them get in fights, it breaks my heart. But it makes me angry when the entire student body is portrayed as a group of violent animals.

The news articles I read had several quotes -- "there was blood everywhere," "basically everyone was fighting," "it was just totally crazy," -- that were inaccurate. As an eye witness to the events, I can tell for sure that there was not blood everywhere, that the vast majority of people were not fighting (884 out of 900), and that the school as a whole was not totally crazy.

Again, fighting is bad, and the fights that took place at Cardozo were far worse than average. But I wanted to clear up the fact that Cardozo is not a "crazy" place, and our students are not "crazy" people. I didn't want these sensationalized portrayals of our school being the only thing people heard.

Anonymous said...

So, do we have what started the fight straightened out and enough support to work with the anger management issues ? So much for a peaceful lunch break.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a boy friend jealous deal and a fight cut loose over it.Never met a man worth all that fighting and bloody trouble.Lunch room ladies had to clean up all that fuss ? What in the world started that fight ?

Anonymous said...

Why hasn't the school come up with the displine program and Rhee doesn't work in there every day ? Not sure if we can throw it on Rhee unless the principle had requested already more security.The system as a whole isn't set up with an alternative educational program and seroiusly needs to be implemented.

Peace Out ! said...

Seriously,what started the fight and is everyone chilling out or is there more still brewing behind the scenes ? Was it gang related or over a boy ?

unbelieveable said...

Cardoza teacher thank you for your explanation. We have many problems here in the District of Columbia and one of them is racism. It becomes a bigger problem everyday that the Fenty Adminstration exploits it by hiring whites and blaming blacks for the ills of the city. How else can you explain someone with as little credibility as Ms. Rhee being Chancellor. Hopefully they won't be able to get Obama officials to feed into their exploitive tactics.

The Washington Teacher said...

The newspaper articles did not report what actually started the brawl at Cardozo. I would venture to guess that reporters did not get to the bottom of this or else they would have reported it.

Presently the proposed citywide discipline plan is still a draft and awaiting public comment.