By Robbie Nevel
On Buzzfeed, the comments below the story were unanimous. They all agreed: Miami Sunset Senior High had long been facing horrid health conditions. This school already has a bad reputation (on Yelp, the school hovers at a 2-out-of-5 star rating), but this latest affirmation came in the form of a story online that featured a young student and Tumblr blogger, 16-year-old Ana, who had shared pictures of the school’s condition on her blog.
While some comments played down the shocking conditions, they were lost in a sea of criticism and complaints. Many of the commenters had attended the school in the past and indicated signs of the neglect that might lead to this situation. Mold in the dance room, bathrooms, and even the lunch milk was decried on Ana’s blog, the Buzzfeed story, and in comments. A cockroach infestation was reported. Water from a drinking fountain was shown to be disgustingly off color.
According to Ana, students who have tried to share photos have been censored by the high school.
“The students who posted this on Twitter are being forced to write apology letters and are being threatened with suspension and/or expulsion for violating school rules and tagging news stations and district people in their Twitter post,” she wrote.
“I too am a parent,” read a comment on Buzzfeed, “and the school looks just like this. The milk is spoiled and the school is in very bad condition. Dr. Cox [Dr. Lucia Cox, the school’s principle] is threatening the students with cancelling their activities if they continue to talk to the press.”
One commenter, an alumni, suggested circulating a letter signed by other alumni denouncing the alleged censorship.
After she made the initial posts to her Tumblr account, she publicly answered a deluge of questions. The dialogue turned to the school board and why they have not been more diligent. One Tumblr advised getting sympathetic teachers to help publicize the issue.
Apparently a bad incident involving moldy beverages already prompted some degree of awareness and action.
“I know a few teachers who agree with the students actually,” Ana replied,”one of them has been saying for the entire [year] we can’t do anything but take pictures and show […] parents and have them contact the board. No one really took it seriously until this week when we came back from break and that happened to our juice and milk. I know at least 3 teachers who might help…”
Another curious picture illustrated the bizarre policy that students are barred from taking library books off shelves. In a whimsical post, Ana wrote: “I wonder what would happen if I touch a book in the school library…will I get detention…”
The Buzzfeed post was authored by an account calling itself Raindrop Roulette and is the only post made by the user.
Miami Sunset Senior High administrators were not available for comment by the time this article was published.