Monday, July 1, 2013

MEDIA ALERT: Queens Teachers Warned DOE Officials of Abusive Principal Minerva Zanca, Demand Action

Why should the DOE and press worry about a trifling item like racism by a principal? If a principal murdered a teacher and was found holding a bloody knife Walcott and Queens HS Supt Juan Mendez, who like Walcott has always been such full of bullshit, would cover for the principal.

Sign the petition and spread the word.

--- MEDIA ALERT: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - Monday, July 1, 2013  ---

Queens Teachers Warned DOE Officials of Abusive Principal, Demand Action

Peter Lamphere –
United Federation of Teachers Chapter Leader
Pan American International High School, Elmhurst, Queens

Kevin Powell –

Community Activist, President of BK Nation
Teachers and staff at a Queens high school have asked for a local superintendent to step in to repair an abusive work environment.

The school was recently shaken by allegations that principal Minerva Zanca fired African American teachers, saying on one occasion that a teacher “looked like a gorilla in a sweater with nappy hair” and asking about another “did you see his big lips quivering?” []

An online petition for removal of the principal has received over 1,000 signatures. []

These are not the first reports of difficulty with the new principal. In early June the faculty wrote a formal letter to Superintendent Juan Méndez requesting support in what they described as “an abusive environment and culture of fear in the school.” [].

Teachers say that they are “often punished, humiliated or belittled in front of their colleagues when a simple conversation would have sufficed.”
The letter, also addressed to Children First Network Cyndi Kerr and Internationals Network Leader Claire Sylvan (two administrators who support the school’s functioning), was approved by consensus after a number of union chapter meetings.

In the letter staff noted that they attempted to have “discussions with Ms. Zanca about trying to work together to find a proactive and productive solution for everyone.” When this effort failed, they were left with no other option than to appeal to her supervisors.

“We have received no response from our request to DOE officials for intervention to help address the toxic environment,” said Peter Lamphere, the local UFT representative. “Our students and their parents deserve better than to be left stranded while their school community is dismantled by an abusive administrator.”

At least 15 of 38 staff in the seven-year-old school have left or are planning to transfer this coming school year, many due to the hostile and threatening environment created by Ms. Zanca.

Note that MORE's Peter Lamphere is the chapter leader. This was the school the UFT found for Peter when they parachuted him out of Bronx HS of Science where the vicious Valerie Reidy, now retiring - Valerie Reidy, Ding Dong - U rated him twice for - well -- being chapter leader. Yes, that is the UFT response. Go after our chapter leaders and rather than fight this basic attack on the union, we will get the guy out of your hair.


  1. UFT is completely corrupt. They work with administration to screw over any vocal teachers.

    The Queens UFT office is corrupt. Lots of Queens teachers filing lawsuits.

    Hmmmmmm - Hey UFT Queens office !! - why is it that so many teachers from Queens need legal representation??

  2. You'll portray him as a noble saint, but, could it be that Lamphere just keeps looking for a fight?

  3. Their are always two sides to a story and in this case three. First of all Ms. Zanca is PUERTO RICAN MULATTO. Why in the world would she be racist against herself? The two teachers in question were denied tenured by Mr. Mendez. Ms. Zanca supported their tenure. The theater teacher ALWAYS received accolades by Ms. Zanca. Her program was reduce in budget due to financial constraints. The AP in question is being investigated by the DOE's OSI for misconduct of funds. This was brought up by the NETWORK that realized some irregularities.
    Do you know that the previous principal of this school was bullied by her staff and resigned? Ms. Zanca has brought in numerous PD opportunities for the school to help scaffold teachers. She was always looking for how to help teachers improve their practice.
    Yes she work for Jose Cruz but her leadership style is different. She is a product of the LEAP program which has successful candidates.

  4. This entire educational system lacks harmony, which should be prevalent to benefit students. I blame the administration in that regard. An incompetent administrator such as Juan Mendez is a poison in the system. He is ineffient and unpleasant. He has cheated on regents with made up grades to raise to the top. He should be fired.

  5. Juan Mendez is not going anywhere, he is a very bad apple in the educational environment. He is a man of nepotism and favoritism and will retaliate if challenged. This man is a bully! He left with a very bad reputation from EBT High School in Brooklyn. The New York Post should investigate him.


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