Teachers cite “unprecedented all-time low in staff morale” created by Superintendent Lindo, “leaving teachers feeling unwanted, devalued, and disrespected …”
Teachers with the Emeryville School District publicly blasted Superintendent Debbra Lindo tonight for violating the District’s guiding principles, destroying teacher morale, and polarizing the parent-teacher community during her one-year tenure with the District.
The litany of complaints, listed in a resolution of “no confidence” presented to the School Board during its meeting tonight, includes:
- Failing to provide clear leadership and academic direction aligned with the District’s purpose and guiding principles
- Using superficial “dashboard indicators” to address academic performance
- Failing to communicate with staff and/or respond to questions
- Creating an unprecedented all-time low in staff morale, leaving teachers feeling unwanted, devalued and disrespected
- Cutting teaching staff so significantly as to negatively affect student learning
- Polarizing the parent-teacher community
- Adding more administrative positions while cutting teachers
- Undermining the teachers’ union and members’ rights
- Excluding teachers from discussions and decision-making
The “no confidence” resolution, prepared by the Emery Teachers Association and presented by 20 teachers, concluded, “Our district needs a superintendent who is a leader who inspires trust and loyalty with families, employees, and the community … who is focused on students and can create an academic vision and purpose that is inclusive, meaningful and sustaining. …”
Parent Brian Carver, who is married to Council Member Jac Asher and has two children in the District, said he felt “sick to my stomach” after the resolution was read, calling it “stunning and disheartening” and urging Lindo to immediately tender her resignation.
“It is inconceivable to me that we can go forward after hearing that litany of concerns” said Carver, who was visibly upset.
According to teachers, 62 percent of the Emery Secondary School staff has been affected by Lindo’s cost-cutting measures, which have included laying off some teachers and reducing the hours of others. Mark Davis, a history teacher at Emery Secondary for 15 years, said some teachers’ hours were reduced to such an extent that they couldn’t afford to stay. “You need a certain number of hours to survive, and for some teachers that became impossible.” he said.
But Davis said the teachers’ biggest beef with Lindo has less to do with cost cutting and more to do with decisions around programming, course offerings and what the teachers see as crucial to providing a good education.
“We would like the opportunity to express what we think is beneficial to the students. That’s it,” Davis said. “We’re in the classroom, we’re with the kids, and we want to help them.”
(If viewing this story from the homepage: To make a comment, or to read the comments of others, click on the headline to go to the story page, then scroll down to the bottom.)