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Madison Park Students Protest Lack Of Schedules

Students at Madison Park Technical Vocational High School in Roxbury protested Tuesday morning after four days of school without any class schedules.

"We will not be standing in the hallway doing nothing, we refuse to do that," senior Kassandra Cologne said. "Our education is important to us."

Schedules are normally sent to students and teachers in June.

Boston Public Schools spokesperson Lee McGuire said as the district intervenes to help improve academic performance at Madison Park, it's uncovering unexpected issues, such as a complicated scheduling process.

"The schedule has been so incorrectly done for so many years that they are trying to put something together that was broken in the first place, and it has not been connecting in the right way," McGuire said.

The school has been the focus of much concern among parents and community leaders. As part of the district intervention, Madison Park teachers had to re-apply for their jobs this year, and in August more than 60 positions had yet to be filled. On the first day of school, officials said just two positions remained vacant.

But junior Kellsi Pemberton said the first few days of school have been a big waste of time.

"We are out here [protesting] because we are trying to get our class schedules," she said Tuesday morning. "It's day four and we have nothing. We have been sitting in a classroom all day doing absolutely nothing."

Interim Superintendent John McDonough said he's proud the students are fighting for their education, and that the department is working to make sure the students' voices are heard.

"We are serious in identifying with them [about] what concerns exist for them in the school," McDonough said. "Not just about a schedule, but as we move forward so they have confidence in their own success. That's why they want to be here, that's where the level of frustration is."

Some freshman and sophomores have already been issued schedules, and McDonough said the rest are expected to be finished by Wednesday morning.

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