New Details on Coral Gables High Stabbing
The source, whose identity we are not revealing, says the stabber confronted Juan Carlos Rivera about it as students moved between first and second periods. Police have not released the name of the attacker.
The argument escalated into a fight. Rivera was stabbed three times with a box cutter, including in his chest.
The tragic incident has spawned a lot of reactionary comments from Coral Gables High parents and former students, expressing shock that such a violent episode could take place at an otherwise well-behaved school in an affluent neighborhood.
But I've received two emails that asserted the school is in decline. One came from a parent who opted to send his kid to Ransom Everglades and pay a hefty tuition rather than let his progeny attend Coral Gables.
"The word we heard was the magnet program side of the school is great but that the regular student population can be scary," the parent says. "When we visited the school last year, there wasn't much of a sense of pride there... litter in the halls, etc., the little clues you notice, as opposed to other schools that are better managed."
The other email came from a parent of a girl who graduated from Coral Gables in 1997. "I have seen this school become more 'ghetto' every year since then," she says, noting the new principal, Adolfo Costa, has a poor track record of maintaining discipline.
Indeed, Costa was the focus of my exposé of Allapattah Middle School, where he was principal for two years before being transferred to Coral Gables earlier this summer. During my investigation for that story, Costa terminated an English teacher who reported him to his school district supervisors because he refused to enforce the students' code of conduct.
She and other teachers provided documentation that Costa turned a blind eye to problematic students who assaulted their classmates, insulted and threatened teachers, and skipped class on a daily basis.
It turned out Costa was just obeying orders from then-Superintendent Rudy Crew, who had enacted an unwritten policy to minimize all disciplinary actions against badly behaved children.