Principal Mr. Emmanuel Polanco
Principal Mr. Emmanuel Polanco of Isobel Rooney Middle School 80 has been principal for nearly ten years now. He has transformed Middle School 80 into a modern, and disciplined school. With more after-school programs than most schools in district 10. Offering Basketball, Soccer, girls’ Softball and many other activities that end at 6:00 Pm.
As a result, many students stay off the streets and, in school, participate in enriching, and developing activities. Mr. Polanco became the principal of Middle School 80 as an interim principal initially, then became a permanent principal.
Mr. Polanco earned his position as principal with years of experience, and excellent grades at Columbia University School of Education, a very prestigious school. Perhaps his good grades, his desire, and his motivation to help his community have made Emmanuel Polanco a target for everyone. Many who always disliked Emmanuel Polanco have to do with their inner disappointment seeing a principal of such a young age, a person of Dominican descent.
Columbia University School of Education
Mr. Polanco became principal barely in his 30s. Bringing back a culture of learning, discipline, and culture. A school that under the previous administration was closed for extremely poor performance. When Principal Polanco arrived, this young, energized, and eager leader put tears, sweat, and blood to change what was once seen as an undesirable school by parents, and students compared to P/M 280 in the same building next door.
Mr. Polanco has put countless hours into making calls and finding grants, and funds to bring to Middle School 80. Middle School 80 in 2022 is the first school fully in the cloud, offering every student a school-connected device to support student growth and development. This happened years before the pandemic, and every school was forced to offer students devices.
Mr. Polanco has been attacked by the New York Post for years. Relying solely on “He said, she said”, and rumors to attack Principal Polanco. Many teachers dislike him and try to threaten his livelihood ever since he has been principal. Why? Perhaps because he reminds low-energy, poorly performing teachers, of what could have been their careers had they had the drive, and desire to help Mr. Polanco. Is it a sin to become the leader of a school at a young age? There is nothing new, or surprising to see NYCDOE motivated, and driven administrators.
But why does the New York Post attack Principal Polanco? Is there a bias toward him? Because the NYP solely writes negative stories about Mr. Polanco, and never anything positive worth mentioning. For example, Middle School 80 is one of the few schools in distinct 10 to offer Baseball for the students, as well as Basketball leagues.
Students have the benefit to compete and become talented baseball players. Many principals just avoid that altogether for the injury risk and other reasonable worries.
The responsibilities of a School Principal
Principal Polanco is often the last to leave the building, and the first one to arrive. Working tirelessly to support the needs of the students, and parents during remote teaching and learning. Present in the building while most people were working remotely.
When school resumed last year with restrictions. Such as masks, and temperature checks to avoid the spread and potential hospitalizations. What did most schools do? They have “Zoom” graduations. What did Mr. Polanco do for his Middle School students? He had a very nice, and safe graduation outside.
MS 80 rented chairs and created an impacting, and colorful venue for the students. Students who had been learning remotely for nearly two years had a gorgeous, and memorable graduation.
Honesty or Schemes?
This in part was thanks to the efforts of Mr. Polanco. Working hard with his team for the benefit of the students, even when other principals opted for remote graduations for reasonable reasons, Principal Polanco’s dedication to his students has been shown year after year. Mr. Polanco drove the same white Infinity truck with clear signs of wear, and tear for years.
He makes nearly $200,000 annually, affording him a new vehicle, but his modesty is shown in more than one way. Mr. Polanco has now been caught in a scandal alleging that the NYP started demanding rent from Dominican teachers. Mr. Polanco has not been seen in Middle School 80 ever since these allegations.
Why does the NYP use these offensive and condemning words when referring to Principal Polanco? Words, such as “cronies” implies sarcasm and portray a negative view of Mr. Polanco. Mr. Polanco does not need the few hundred dollars that have been alleged, he makes a very significant salary.
Perhaps we do not share the vision of the community he was trying to create with the Dominican teachers that arrived here and found jobs mostly thanks to Principal Polanco. Alleging that Mr. Polanco was charging rent does not equal responsibility for anything.
Let us look at the facts before running to judgment. Nevertheless, we should, and must give Principal Polanco the benefit of the doubt, in America, you are innocent until proven otherwise. Let’s highly consider the real person, the full person, not just the negative, and aggressive perspective the NYP and others like to impose. What do you think?