To the Editor:
Dan Krauss's article “New school principal tackles old problems” (Aug. 31) incorrectly blames difficulties at Longfellow last year on “rampant staff infighting” and problems with “controlling the staff.” The teaching staff as a whole behaved with professionalism and was part of the solution, asking for help from the district to prepare for this year's schedule changes, not the problem.
As a parent volunteer at Longfellow for the past three years, I greatly respect the school's dedicated, highly-skilled teaching staff. They have worked long and hard to bring the benefits of an arts and technology magnet school to all of Longfellow's students. I would like to thank them for providing my son with a sound, enriched education as he starts high school this year.
Meanwhile, the Arts Magnet grant “sunsetted” at the end of my son's second year. Budgets were further slashed for this year. Longfellow administrators were constantly “putting out fires” – floods in the supply rooms of the newly remodeled building and in the new gym; no substitute teachers available to teach classes when teachers were absent; inadequate staffing to supervise yards and halls; and many more.
I am encouraged by the reports of positive teacher response to principal Cheung's efforts so far. I hope the district central administration will help her to provide an organized, supportive environment where teachers can continue to teach, without the distractions of a continous crisis.