Sunday, March 21, 2010

Say it isn't so

So this Amherst Bully web article falls into the "You gotta be kidding me category!" 105 faculty and staff of Amherst Regional High School sign a petition supporting their boss Mark Jackson, after he made an ass of himself bullying School Committee member Catherine Sanderson at the 3/9 SC meeting.

Goes to show what lousy institutional memory they have. After all, 8 years ago that many staff signed a petition penned by ARHS journalism teacher Bruce Penniman supporting pedophile principal Steven Myers, who almost days later disappeared in the middle of the night.

And in 1999 a 17-year-old Puerto Rican girl garnered 158 signatures in one day at the High School decrying the production of 'West Side Story' as the Senior class play; she managed to convince the spineless School Committee to cancel the production--the first time in history any entity has ever banned 'West Side Story.'
video


ARHS The Graphic 1/25/02 Click to enlarge/read

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Geez: let's see, if a petition is floated around a company/institution supporting the boss and you choose not to sign, will the boss know it???

Anonymous said...

That's because she was the first to rightly point out that West Side Story is racist. Times change. We don't have people in black face doing minstrel shows these days either.

Ed said...

Geez: let's see, if a petition is floated around a company/institution supporting the boss and you choose not to sign, will the boss know it???

And when 31% STILL don't sign it?

Seriously folks, 31% of the fac/staff did NOT sign this....

Anonymous said...

And the Vagina Monologues are sexist.

But that's ok.

We women won!!!! yea! yea!

TomG said...

Why would teachers suddenly feel the need to recognize, in a written petition, the "outstanding leadership" of principal, Mark Jackson"?

His experience, knowledge and compassion provide stability and maintain an environment that fosters open dialogue.

If memory serves me correctly, Jackson shut down Sanderson when she started to respond to his statement at the School Board meeting by interrupting her and proclaiming his statement was not a question, as if she had no right to respond to a statement just as she would have the right to respond to a question. His statement was about her statement. Doesn't she have the right to have a dialogue with him about his response to her observations about hiring a superintendent from outside the system?

In this case at least, Jackson clearly DID NOT maintain an environment that fostered open dialogue. Instead, he set out to and accomplished shutting down a response by Sanderson, a response she was clearly entitled to make.

My guess is, many of the teachers who signed this were not at the School Board meeting when Jackson shut down dialogue in a fit of well-contained rage. Maybe his rage has merit, maybe it doesn't. One thing is for sure, his behavior was precisely the opposite of what the teachers attest to in writing.

They like having him as their principal. I get that.

It is not clear the principal at the High School is committed to the kind of change the superintendent and the School Committee are calling. His role as a leader requires his commitment and his effort to rally the teachers and administration to that end as well.

Anonymous said...

"As the Amherst schools regroup after the departure of the superintendent, we want to assure the community that the high school is in the best of hands under the leadership of Mark Jackson."

Of course we have a interim superintendent who reports to the elected school committee - the taxpaying public's elected representatives who set policy and provide oversight.

It would be thoughtful of the teachers to recognize the authority of the superintendent, and wise of Principal Jackson to make a public commitment to follow the lead of the superintendent and the school committee. A private conversation with between Jackson and Sanderson to clear the air would be wise of Jackson too. He owes her an apology for publicly shutting down the dialogue about the value of hiring a new superintendent from outside the system.


...We don't need no stinkin cowboy charting his own course at the high school.

Anonymous said...

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Ed said...

My guess is, many of the teachers who signed this were not at the School Board meeting when Jackson shut down dialogue in a fit of well-contained rage.

My guess is that many of the teachers who signed it didn't want to have that rage directed at them, personally.

Anonymous said...

Ed, are you still spouting off your 31% figure???? Didn't you see the post on Catherine's blog that said that not all the HS faculty had a chance to see the letter or were asked to sign it? And NONE of the MS faculty even knew about the letter.

You are an impossible buffoon! Get a life!

Anonymous said...

To Anonymous at 8:03: How "Amherst" of you. West Side Story is an equal opportunity slam on both sides - the white kids as well as the Puerto Rican kids. They were mostly ALL jerks and the stereotypes were equally divided between the two gangs. Hey, why don't we ban reading Shakespeare in the schools for his well-established anti-semitic references. Unbelievable.

Anonymous said...

The schools are the part of our local government that resists public scrutiny most effectively. They do pushback beautifully, with claims that critics are bashing teachers, etc.

And that's true all over America. Why should Amherst be different?

And look at the overall condition of our schools nationwide. This particular dynamic is taking us straight to the bottom. Even the Obama Administration recognizes this.

Anonymous said...

All you've got is years-old tired statements about west side story and the vagina monologues? how about some recent gripes to flame the masses?

Ed said...

Didn't you see the post on Catherine's blog that said that not all the HS faculty had a chance to see the letter or were asked to sign it? And NONE of the MS faculty even knew about the letter.

Allegedly.

Exactly how difficult would it have been to advise the other 31%? So either the school is so cliquish that you don't talk to them, or so disorganized that they can't be found, OR they were asked because they wouldn't have signed it anyway.

Assuming that they weren't asked...

Anonymous said...

Sheesh, Ed. You are too much.

I know. You are right. The 31% refused to sign it...and so did ALL of the MS. How could I even imagine that you could ever be WRONG!!! I don't know what got into me!

Anonymous said...

Larry, you surprise me. You are guy who is always going on about people's rights and what that means in teh united states.

Well, Stephen Myers had a right to due process of law. He was being railroaded at the time the teachers stood up for his right to due process.

You know, Larry, America is the type of country where every citizen gets the right to due process of law, not just those people who might be accused of crimes that don't offend us.

Just like the free speech right you enjoy.

So get off the teachers' backs for doing something you support most of the time.

Flame away flamer!

LarryK4 said...

Yeah, nothing wrong with "due process."

Why I liked Attorney General Eric Holder's comment last week about Osama Bin Laden: "Let's deal with reality here. The reality is we will be reading Miranda rights to a corpse."

Anonymous said...

Ed,
The deadline for the Bulletin is 9am Monday. The letter was written over last weekend and teachers were told by word of mouth about the leter starting at 7:30 am last Monday. That's about an hour to get teachers to sign it. Also, just so you know, the list of 157 includes hourly workers that weren't working Monday because it was a curriculum day, it includes East Street and South Amherst High teachers who were not in the building at that time, and also people who are on leave. I counted about 35 people that are included in those three categories that were on that 157 person list. That brings down your 31%,to 14%, and given the time constrictions that went on, I wouldn't be confident that those 14% actually refused to sign. Perhaps those teachers running it would have been more diligent in finding everyone if they knew the end number would be so scutinized (by you).

Anonymous said...

I don't really want a principal who is overwhelming supported by his faculty. I'm not saying that they should be war with each other, but he is their boss.

I would be happy to hear that they respect him but don't always agree, but frankly Jackson is nothing more than a paycheck. He makes more than most area superintendents and he's incapable of getting his teachers to switch to the semester system -- which he supported, but without much rigor.

Look, the teachers love it here. They make a lot of money, they get raises when other folks are getting laid off, and they have a HS principal who only cares about his monstrously large check clearing.

I guess that's how he pays his daughter's private school tuition -- you know, with our tax money.

I wonder how all those public school teachers feel about him sending his kid to Bement?

LarryK4 said...

I seem to catch a lot of crap from Amherst public school cheerleaders for sending my daughter to the Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School--and at least they ARE A PUBLIC SCHOOL.

Anonymous said...

Fcking Amherst.


Where dog shit is edible, if only you believe them.

Anonymous said...

yawn.