Parents: PS 48 trailers have mold, mildew, vermin

April 8, 2014 9:04:40 AM PDT
Parents of kids who attend a school in Washington Heights are outraged over the conditions students are being subjected to, saying trailers being used as school buildings contain mold, mildew and vermin.

The school is PS 48 on Broadway, and the trailers are Transportable Classroom Units, or TCUs for short.

They were meant to be a temporary solution for overcrowding a decade ago, but they're still there and parents want them gone.

Some kindergartners begin their day in the trailers, which are falling apart according to several student advocacy groups who took pictures of the conditions.

"Stop the trailers," PS 48 PTA President Sarinne Bedancs said. "We don't want the trailers, so please, take it away from us."

Bedancs has two children the school, and both had classes in the trailers.

"The Department of Education needs to do something now," she said. "Not five years, so we're begging you. We're commanding you. We're demanding. We're doing everything possible."

Student advocate and District 6 Community Education Council president Miriam Aristy-Farer organized a news conference outside of the school to bring attention to the issue, not just at PS 48, but at schools across the city.

"They're kindergarten students, and this is their introduction to the education system in New York," she said. "An old moldy trailer."

She says the DoE is currently using 350 trailers in the city, and many are in bad shape.

"My wish for these children is that by December 2014, they are in that building," said Mary Conway-Spiegel, of the Partnership for Student Advocacy.

DoE officials say they don't want the trailers either. In a written statement to Eyewitness News, they say there is a proposed five-year capital plan to eleminate the trailers, which they say are regularly inspected.

But parents say that's not good enough, and they want them gone immediately.

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