November 9, 2018
Dear Shaker Parents and Community Members,
Last night’s Community Meeting at the High School didn’t go as anybody wished. We witnessed the emotion, the passion and the frustration. We heard you. The climate in our community needs to be immediately addressed.
We pledge to take the pieces from last night and work with our community to put them together based on truly listening to the many voices that we all heard. That means embracing the courageous comments by bright and engaged students and their families who have told us that they need more from us. That means celebrating our outstanding teaching staff and working with them to provide the supports they need to teach our students. That means treating each other with respect and civility.
We know that we had the wrong format for this meeting and that we failed to give you the answers that you sought. Immediately after the meeting, we reached out to our District legal counsel and other consultants to assess each personnel matter and to discuss the information we can share with the community. While we go to great lengths to protect privacy, we expect to make more information available to you as soon as we can.
We are always open to hearing your concerns. Please email any feedback to the Board at [email protected]. We will collect this feedback, share it with the Administration and use it to guide our work going forward. In addition, Board members will continue to meet regularly with the Administration to discuss the concerns that students, families and others bring to our attention.
Regarding community concerns about the current personnel issues at the High School, please know that the School Board supports the District's process for looking into issues and concerns involving staff members. That process includes:
Evaluating a complaint to determine next steps.
Assessing the need to place a staff member on administrative leave pending a review.
Gathering statements from witnesses and other involved parties.
Ensuring any absences or interruptions are limited in time and scope.
Finally, we are happy to share that we have hired the search firm of Ray & Associates to help us select our next superintendent. In the coming weeks, the Ray team will be on the ground in Shaker to conduct in-person interviews, focus groups and to facilitate community input sessions. The group will also set up an online survey to help the Board understand the key capabilities we should seek in our next superintendent. We ask for your help as we work to include many voices in this process.
For more information on the search firm selection, please visit shaker.org.
The Shaker Heights Board of Education