Yesterday I learned of the passing last December of Dr. James Sanders, who served as a faculty member in the Department of Education from 1968 until his retirement in 2000, and remained active in his emeritus role up to leaving Staten Island in 2018. I did not know Dr. Sanders, but messages I have received from faculty highlighted the key role he played, along with Biology Professor Leonard Ciaccio, in establishing the Discovery Institute, which provided professional development opportunities for K-12 teachers and attracted significant outside funding. Prior to coming to CSI, Dr. Sanders taught at St. Ignatius high school in Chicago. He was a scholar with broad interests and three advanced degrees– Master of Arts in Theology and Philosophy from Loyola University and a Doctorate in History of American Education from the University of Chicago. He published two books through Oxford University Press: The Education of an Urban Minority (1977) and Irish vs. Yankees – A Social History of the Boston Schools (2018). 

As noted in a message yesterday, a  memorial Website celebrating Dr. Sanders has been established and an obituary is found has been published on SI Live. A memorial gathering in his honor will be held on Saturday, Aug. 28, 2021 from noon to 4:00pm at LiGreci’s Staaten, 697 Forest Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10310. 

If you plan to attend the memorial, please RSVP online and spread the word.

My condolences to his family and to those who knew him at CSI and in the greater Staten Island community.

By Michael Parrish