Principal: 100% students graduate or no prom!

March 15, 2013 2:42:27 PM PDT
A principal at a school in the Pelham Gardens section of the Bronx threatened to cancel the prom if all seniors didn't graduate, but the chancellor says it was a bluff.

The Collegiate Institute for Math and Science, also known as CIMS, is one of several schools in the building, and one of very few in the city with a graduation rate of 90%.

"If they do 90%, why not 100%?" said Nadra McClain, a parent.

That's exactly what CIMS principal, Shadia Alvarez thought when she ordered up a poster, threatening to cancel the senior prom unless 100% of seniors were prepared to graduate.

"The principal is not canceling the prom, but her goal is to motivate the students," said Dennis Walcott, NYC Schools Chancellor.

Principal Alvarez did not return Eyewitness News' call, asking for comment, but the prom threat is the talk of the building among students and parents of the other schools.

"You can't penalize all students because some don't make the grade," said Tianna Cramer, a student.

"The threat was harsh, a prom is a big moment in time for kids," said Gerald Tyler, a parent.

Even though the prom is still on, and the threat has been officially called a motivational tool and a ploy to encourage perfection, some parents at CIMS like the idea.

"It was a good idea and I hope students get the message," said Ileana Negron, a parent.