By Trevor TenBrink
NEW YORK – A Bronx middle school principal has a reputation for yelling at students and teachers.
But on at least one occasion his ranting apparently included a threat to “blow up” his teaching staff.
The amazing part is that the principal remains on the job until an investigation of his behavior is completed, according to the New York Daily News. That could take up to three years.
Staff and students apparently will be left to cross their fingers and hope for the best until some sort of decision is made regarding the principal’s fitness to serve.
Neifi Juan Acosta, principal of New York Intermediate School 232, was holding a post-Hurricane Sandy informational meeting with staff members last November.
At one point during the meeting he started yelling about his frustrations and how much stress he was under, but he didn’t stop there. He started describing a ‘doomsday scenario’ as he declared that faculty were putting themselves in ‘God’s seat’ of judgment, according to the Daily News.
“It got very fire and brimstone, very fundamentalist,” one educator told the Daily News.
Then came the really scary part. When asked if he was upset with the faculty or the students, Acosta claimed that he was only upset at the faculty.
He allegedly went on to say, “I know what I’ll do, I’ll call a conference in the cafeteria, and I’ll put on a vest like the terrorists do and I’m going to blow you all up,” according to a witness.
After numerous complaints from faculty in attendance, the city began an investigation of Acosta. Investigators began interviewing witnesses in January.
The process has been anything but ordinary.
Throughout the investigation, Acosta has been placing large, laminated posters with Biblical quotes outside the classrooms of teachers who are scheduled to be interviewed, according to the report.
Some posters contain drawings of a ladder supposedly leading up to heaven, and the tag line, “We will never, ever surrender.”
One poster said, “We may not fight for our freedom, however, we know this. We will never surrender our freedom … you would have to attempt to take it away from us, in which case fighting would be inevitable. So … we dare you to try.”
Acosta has not been suspended or put on temporary leave, according to the news report.
Are school officials really confident that this man will not snap and hurt somebody, like he has already threatened to do? How can they allow him to keep working, as if he poses no danger to anyone around him?
We’ve always heard that New York is a different world, but this is beyond belief. We’re not sure who’s truly crazy in this scenario – Acosta or the people who decided he should keep working every day.