Sunday, January 24, 2016

Former Southbridge High Teacher Weighs In

Today's Worcester Telegram contained a letter to the Editor from a former teacher at Southbridge High school.

I read where Southbridge Schools are in danger of being taken over by the state. This comes as no surprise to me; someone who taught mathematics at Southbridge High School.

It is my understanding that Southbridge has had seven superintendents and seven principals since 2011 – that is almost unfathomable. I mean, that should have set off alarms at every level of government. What is the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education thinking; that the eighth principal and superintendent of schools will turn Southbridge around? What has Representative Peter Durant done to help in this regard? What about the Southbridge Board of Selectmen and School Board – they hire and fire all these people. 

I worked at SHS from 2001 to 2006; taught MCAS Math, Algebra I & II, and Honors Algebra II, and was coach of the varsity Math Team (they won first place in our division), and was nominated for a 2005 Presidential Award in Science & Mathematics (PAMST). We had a great department head (my best boss ever) and an outstanding math staff. My problem, I also was assistant union building representative and filed several grievances against the principal. The other assistant building rep and I decided that it was in our best interests to seek employment elsewhere.

MCAS scores forced Southbridge into school choice and SHS had a brain drain and that only lowered the scores more; now to the point of a possible state takeover - I think that may be a blessing.

Herbert John Andrews

Naples, Florida

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