Five months after its founding principal left under a storm of media controversy, New York City’s only dual language and culture Arabic-English public school has a new principal.
The Department of Education named Holly Reichert, a former Peace Corps volunteer who has taught in Cairo and Damascus, and directed an English department in a school in Bahrain, as permanent principal of the Khalil Gibran International Academy Tuesday.
Reichert succeeds the school’s founder, Debbie Almontaser, who resigned last August amid criticism in the media and elsewhere for failing to immediately condemn t-shirts for teen girls with the message “Intifada NYC.”
Almontaser has since filed suit against the Education Department seeking fair and equal consideration for the permanent principal position now filled by Reichert.
“The likelihood of her being reinstated diminishes somewhat once a new principal is appointed—which is presumably why DOE did it,” said her attorney, Alan Levine.