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NYC Principal Criticized for Email Urging Staff to Support Palestinians

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A middle school principal in Brooklyn reportedly encouraged teachers and administrators to advocate for government sanctions against Israel.

The New York Post reported on Friday:

In an email sent amid the since-suspended fighting between Israel and Hamas terrorists, Principal Amanda Bueno told staffers at MS 136, “If you have been watching the news in absolute horror, you are not alone.”

“You can take action today by protesting, attending a vigil, making a public commitment to Palestinian Liberation, signing a petition, or calling your government officials to place sanctions on Isreal (sic),” she wrote Wednesday morning. “The time is now to take a stand for those impacted by state-sanctioned violence and crimes against the humanity of the most vulnerable in our world.”

Bueno is the principal at Charles O. Dewey Middle School 136, according to its website.

She reportedly titled the email “Day of Action in Solidarity with The Palestinian Uprising & General Strike” and also gave recipients several links.

“One led to the ‘Teach Palestine’ website and another to a May 10 article about U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) tweeting against the Israeli raid on the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem that sparked the recent round of Hamas rocket attacks,” the Post article read.

A teacher at MS 136 who is Jewish, told the outlet, “I opened the email and I was in shock. I felt very targeted and very attacked by her words.”

“These resources she provided, it’s propaganda,” the teacher said, adding, “There was nothing in the email about Hamas rockets targeting innocent Israeli civilians.”

A spokesman with the Department of Education (DOE) told the Post, “The matter is being addressed internally and was referred to [the special commissioner of investigation] for further investigation.”

“Schools are not public forums for purposes of political expression, and staff may not use DOE resources in the furtherance of personal or political activities,” spokesman Nathaniel Steyer said.

Schools Chancellor Meisha Porter on Saturday urged the principal to apologize, describing her actions as “a clear exercise of poor judgment,” according to the Post.

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