NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — There have been ongoing concerns about students and teachers returning to New York City classrooms. But some parents say schools aren’t even ready for remote learning.
A Brooklyn mom told CBS2’s Jessica Layton exclusively on Wednesday she kept her daughter home from school to keep her safe, only to be faced with a whole different danger.
There was disappointment and disgust from a mom in Bay Ridge, after her 10-year-old daughter’s first day of remote learning was hijacked in the most sickening way.
“I was angry. I was furious. I felt attacked for my child. I felt like somebody had just sexually attacked us,” Devon Morales said.
Morales said five minutes into the sixth grade Google meet, somebody took over as the host and started streaming pornography.
“I was not prepared to have to have a conversation with my daughter about sex acts on her first day of sixth grade, but we did,” Morales said.
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City Councilman Justin Brannan took to Twitter to express his frustration, saying “I thought we had this figured out. This is totally unacceptable and completely avoidable.”
The Department of Education responded to the disturbing incident saying in part, “We have strict security settings for DOE-approved platforms. The class was immediately taken offline.”
The DOE is already under fire for its preparation, or lack thereof, ahead of this unprecedented school year.
After turning off their computers Wednesday afternoon, teachers protested the problems that persist five days before they’re supposed to welcome kids back into the buildings.
“Teachers and students are being put on the front lines of this disease,” teacher Vanessa Rozan said.
The city has said it’s hiring an additional 2,000 teachers to address a widespread teacher shortage, and is asking families to be patient.
“We said repeatedly it will not be a perfect start,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said.
Morales said she doesn’t need it to be perfect. She just needs her daughter to be protected.
“I don’t think that anybody can honestly say they have it under control and that tomorrow is gonna be safe online again,” Morales said.
She said her daughter’s school has been responsive, calling several times after the incident and emailing parents about the investigation. The school still doesn’t know if the hacker was a group of students or an outside cyber bully.
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