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Teachers at Pasco's Connerton Elementary offered easy transfers out



Connerton Elementary School has seen its share of troubles in recent weeks. Some unhappy current and former parents and teachers have protested over the leadership at the school.

Superintendent Heather Fiorentino acknowledged calling the Connerton team a "dysfunctional family" during a recent School Board meeting. She transferred assistant principal Wendy Carswell out, and brought in new AP Claudia Steinacker, in an effort to create a new climate and culture at the school.

Now she's giving any teachers who want to leave the school the opportunity to do so with a streamlined process to transfer into any openings they're qualified to hold. Employee relations director Kevin Shibley sent a letter to all the school's teachers letting them know about the option. "We are committed to improving the culture at Connerton, and would love for you to be a part of this effort; however, we recognize that some employees may prefer to transfer to a different school," he wrote.

See the story here. Read on for Shibley's letter to teachers.

As you know there has been some recent controversy regarding Connerton Elementary School.  We are very proud of the impressive student achievement data at Connerton, and appreciate your efforts to meet the needs of children.   We must continue to build upon this success.

After listening to input from all stakeholders, we also recognize that the school has some concerns with respect to climate and culture. We have transferred Ms. Claudia Steinacker, a well-respected and dynamic leader, to join the administrative team. Our primary goal is to have all stakeholders at Connerton working together to create a positive learning environment for all children and staff.  District staff will also be working closely with the school over the summer and throughout the school year to support the school and address any communication and climate issues that exist. 

We are committed to improving the culture at Connerton, and would love for you to be a part of this effort; however, we recognize that some employees may prefer to transfer to a different school.  At this time, after discussion with the United School Employees of Pasco regarding this issue, we are offering all teachers the opportunity to explore positions at other schools for the 2012/2013 school year.  If you would like to pursue this option, please complete the attached Transfer Request Form and return it to the Department of Employee Relations on or before Tuesday, July 3, 2012. The form may be mailed to the address above or faxed to 813.794.2119. Beginning on Thursday, July 5, 2012, the Department of Employee Relations will begin matching teachers who returned a form with teaching vacancies that may exist at that time. While I am unable to guarantee that vacancies will exist at the schools that you may list on your form, I will do what I can to provide options to those who are interested.  Once a potential match is made, you will be contacted and offered alternative placement(s). You can then choose to accept a new assignment, or return to Connerton Elementary School for 2012/2013.

Again, our goal is to ensure that every employee has a productive work environment.   We are grateful that you are continuing to share your talents as a valued part of our team and look forward to a successful school year. As always, should you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact my office. 

Sincerely, Kevin Shibley, Esq., Director of Employee Relations

[Last modified: Thursday, June 28, 2012 12:32pm]


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