I wanted to start by saying thank you for being my first teaching position and starting my career five years ago. Over my five years of teaching in the district I have had the opportunity to work with some phenomenal teachers, students, and parents. I was fortunate to call XXXXXX High School my home for the last five years. Daily I worked with students and teachers that worked under adverse conditions to earn their education. Teachers that worked long hours, students that often stayed after school, and a building that worked to create a caring environment for our students. We have some of the hardest working teachers in the district. I was fortunate to work under XXXXXXX during my time at XXXXXX and work with some exceptional teachers and mentors. I would more than likely still be at XXXXXXX and a resident of Louisville, but over the last two years the education and work environment of JCPS has left me drained and empty.
It was not the students or hard work that left me empty, but the policies and decisions being made that affected my job every day. We have implemented poorly developed strategies and processes because they touch on the buzz words for good education. Many of the students in our district are working hard to earn their high school diploma, but we have many students that see through the facade for what JCPS really is doing. We implemented Standards Based grading with no plan because this was going to make students work harder. In reality it was your teachers that worked harder to provide multiple attempts for students that knew that they could no longer fail your course. We implemented PBIS without training the teachers or staff thoroughly because the suspension rate needed to change. As a result of this poorly implemented program the students have gained control in many of your schools and classrooms. As a result a few students affect the education of the entire population because there are no longer consequences for their actions. We continue to test students with CASCADE, when the assessments are not being given with fidelity or are in the best interest of the students.
In addition to poorly planned processes, the district has consolidated and promoted administrators and support staff that put their own best interests in front of the students. Several programs designed to help the students at XXXXXX High School have been indefinitely placed on hold or scrapped completely because of poor district leadership. We have had to jump through hoops to implement research based reading intervention programs during which time it is the students that suffer. We have had to cancel the development of satellite computer centers for our kids, when the computers have already been donated.
At the end of five years with JCPS, I made the decision to leave my home. I left because I could no longer go into this job every day because I felt that we were no longer providing an effective education for our students. I still love teaching and I have sent this letter and continue to support the teachers at XXXXXX High School and their initiatives from the other side of the world. I implore the district to change the direction in which it is heading. The students cannot be helped by poorly implemented decisions and keeping the public in the dark. We need as educators the support of the parents and our communities. We need administrators that are invested in the success of each school. We need to work together to look at the students and data available and make educated decisions with the teachers, parents, and community members working together.