School’s relationship form riles Rensselaer mayor
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Parents continue to reach out to NewsChannel 13 about a relationship application. It was given to at least one student in the Rensselaer City School District, asking about her dating life and other personal questions.
The city’s mayor, Mike Stammel, said he received over a dozen calls from concerned parents:
“Telling me things like, ‘What right does the school have to ask for this type of information? Who are they? Why don’t they speak to us first,'” he said.
It was given to the student to “read and reflect” after a relationship caused drama at school, Superintendent Joe Kardash previously said.
The school district is investigating, said Kardash, and the application will never be used again.
“I would just hope that we always keep the parents involved. That’s the key,” Stammel said. “There’s nothing that you want the parent to not know about. In any school.”
NewsChannel 13 was told the relationship application was handed out to the student by the assistant principal, Robert “Bob” Martinelli. He’s known as “Mr. M” on the form.
Stammel said that when he first saw the form through a NewsChannel 13 Facebook post, he was stunned by it. He explained what on the application bothered him.
“The question, ‘If a relationship ends, will I notify ‘Mr. M’ within 48 hours,’ or whatever that is? I’d rather see them notify their parents.”
“The other thing on there is the student’s signature. Obviously, the students can’t be held to some sort of contract. They’re way too young for that,” Stammel said. “Overall, it makes it look like they’re [students] obligated to speak to the school before speaking to anybody else. The whole form is written that way. That’s where I have my objections.”
NewsChannel 13 reached out to Kardash once again.
“If there are any students or parents with information or concerns, I continue to encourage them to reach out to me or to any member of our administrative team directly,” he said in an email.