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|Abingdon School Board Backs Teacher Reassignments
|UPDATED 7:56 a.m. 6/11/10 The Abingdon Board of Education is giving its support to the district's administration, which is reassigning several teachers next school year.
The board met Wednesday night inside the Hedding Grade School gym for its monthly meeting to conduct regular business and issue a statement backing superintendent Dr. Tami Roskamp and the administrative team's moving the teachers, mostly at Hedding. Teachers and parents Tuesday night attended a special board meeting that Roskamp says was scheduled to go over collective bargaining in closed session. But instead of that happening - teachers, staff and parents in the district showed up to criticize the decision to reassign the teachers - which was in a schedule the administration gave to the district's teachers on June 4th.
Roskamp says the schedule was provided at the urging of the teachers even though the amount of state money for certain programs wasn't known at the time nor how many people would be called back after being cut as part of the budget reduction plan proposed in March and approved in April.
Abingdon resident Debbie Keener was the only person to speak to the board among the 80 people at Wednesday night's meeting. Keener is opposed to reassigning the teachers, saying it takes them and the students out of their comfort zones and because of what she contends was no communication by the administration.
"As parents, grandparents, taxpayers, we really do deserve an answer as to why this happened," Keener said. "Maybe we don't all agree that this is the best thing that could happen. But we can't agree with it because we don't know the reasoning behind it."
The board, after a 90 minute closed session to discuss personnel matters, returned with a statement in response to all the criticism board members and the administration have received. Board president Jim Bloomberg read the lengthy statement, which says the board and administration collectively make the decisions on teaching assignments based on building strong teaching teams within each grade level.
The statement also says teacher strengths and personalities are blended to develop the most educationally sound teaching teams. The board reinstated some programs at the meeting - including a third section of kindergarten, a Pre-K teacher and an aide, a Title 1 program teacher and six other staff members. Officials say those reinstatements will result in changes to the teaching assignments given to the teachers on June 4th. The board says teachers will be notified of their official teaching assignments by the July 1st deadline.
Hedding Gym starts to fill up as Wednesday night's school board meeting is about to begin. The meeting drew 80 people after several complaints over teacher reassignments for next school year during a meeting the previous night.
(WGIL News Story and Photo by Mike Perry)
|06 10 10 by Newsroom
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