What was supposed to be a surprise for students at Mount Vernon High School devolved into chaos on Friday, following a visit from the mayor and an Internet rapper.
Mount Vernon Mayor Richard Thomas and rapper “Fatboy” made an appearance at the high school on Friday, Jan. 11, unbeknownst to the school, its principal, or Mount Vernon Superintendent Kenneth Hamilton.
During the visit - which was without notice or authorization - students got riled up and proceeded to begin fighting when the rapper reportedly “made it rain,” throwing money around, which led to the chaotic scene. No injuries were reported, but a trophy case and window were broken amid the confusion and Thomas and the rapper had to be escorted out of the building.
The incident reportedly led to increased security at the school, with new protocols that include barring Thomas from entering any of the city’s schools without Hamilton’s authorization, unless he is visiting as a parent.
On Monday, Thomas apologized for his role in the incident and “accepted responsibility.”
"I have extended apologies to the superintendent for any misunderstanding and assured him a valuable lesson has been learned," the mayor said in a statement. "Any mistakes made will not be repeated and all future visits of this nature will be cleared by the superintendent's office. As always, our intent is to bring value and support to our students and educational system.”
In his own statement, Fatboy said, ”we just want to help the youth. They are our future doctors, future mayors, and we must teach them to win. They need to know right now that they can win. They can hustle. They can work hard. They can make it! Thank you Mount Vernon for the love.”
According to a BlackWestchester.com report, Hamilton was displeased with the impromptu visit that caused certain tests and midterms to reportedly be rescheduled.
“Mayor Thomas and his guests entered the school cafeteria without prior authorization or notification, which disrupted the orderly operations of the school and required the implementation of emergency procedures to secure the building and restore order,” he told the website.
“Neither the building principal nor the Office of the Superintendent was apprised of this visit. I am disappointed that Mayor Thomas did not exercise better judgment or extend the common, professional courtesy of a call to my office to properly arrange for this type of visit. Any potential benefit of this celebrity visit was lost because of this breach in protocol.”
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