REMEMBERING LONG TIME PRINCIPAL

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Sidney H. Morison, a longtime educator and principal of P.S. 84 the Lillian Weber School, may be immortalized on an Upper West Side street.

The pioneering principal led the school for 26 years, from 1969 to 1995. He died Oct. 16 at the age of 77.

His wife, Jacqueline, is planning to request that Community Board 7 honor Morison by renaming West 92nd Street between Central Park West and Columbus Avenue, where P.S. 84 is located. His widow said she wanted to rename something after Morison, who was an education advocate and pioneer of dual-language education.

“What better thing than to rename the street where the school is,” she said. “He had this thing about the community, for the underdog, for social justice.”

Morison, a Bronx native, moved to the Upper West Side to attend Columbia University. He taught math at Joan of Arc High School on West 93rd Street before becoming chair of the mathematics department.

“Sid Morison was a man who believed that all children could learn, and made that belief a reality,” wrote Hannah Hess, an education author, in a letter to Community Board 7. “It would be only fitting to have the street on which the school is located named for Sid Morison.”

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  • davidshapiro

    Sidney Morison's tenure as Principal of P. S. 84 marked the decline and fall of a very well regarded public school from its years of academic excellence (prior to his arrival on the scene) to a period of stagnation, highlighted by plummeting reading test scores and a state of educational blight. Having taught there for a good number of years, both prior to Mr. Morison's arrival, and during his time as Principal, I can attest to the fact that P.S. 84's reputation as one of the finest schools in District 3 took a nosedive under his “leadership.” The school became a rudderless ship, foundering in the backwash of MIS-education! Mr. Morison abandoned any and all standards of discipline or sound educational practices in favor of a “do your own thing” philosophy, the result of which soon became apparent. Together with a small, but militant and highly vocal group of radical parents, Morison presided over the “death” of one of the West Side's best performing schools. If, in fact, there is to be any hope whatever, for the future of NYC Public Schools, then I pray that we are spared Principals who are the like of a Sidney Morison, who has been grievously characterized in the article as “education advocate” and “pioneering principal.” He was neither, and presided over a 26-year period, in which countless numbers of children were denied their right to an education; they were, instead, sacrificed on the altar of “radicalized educational philosophy,” as dictated by, among others, the so-called “education author,” Hannah Hess. It was she and her coterie who brought Sidney Morison to P.S. 84! He then presided over the school's slow descent into the educational abyss. To name the street where P. S. 84 stands after this nonentity would truly be adding insult to injury!

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