|Snowden High School, located near the Copley Library, is a highly sought after, well run, and prideful school. Students love their school. Faculty love their school. Make no mistake: it is their school.It is truly a school that works well. All who attend and work there have pride of ownership of their school. So it was a bit worrisome for all when their current headmaster announced her retirement a few months ago. She had been headmaster for a very short time, taking the place of a headmaster who had helped lead the school for decades. Naturally the school community wanted to have a say in how the new leadership would be chosen. Naturally the school community wanted to be partners in this most important decision. So they reached out to the school district a few months ago looking for their voice in the process. Here’s what the Snowden Faculty Senate said:
“…Snowden is a unique school. Our location, rare status as a campus school (operating in more than five different buildings around Copley Square over the last decade), and our recent success in becoming the only district high school in the BPS that offers the International Baccalaureate all render us a competitive, popular, idiosyncratic, and challenging school to run. The key to Snowden’s successes over the past twenty years lies in the tight-knit, supportive faculty and the dedication of so many individuals to our international, college preparatory mission. We, the Faculty Senate of Snowden International, are eager to build on our recent successes with the International Baccalaureate Program and study abroad trips. We look forward to working collaboratively with our next headmaster to further grow our vision of global-mindedness and academic excellence, yet we find it hard to build collaborative spirit when we are entirely left out of the search and hiring process. It is our firm belief and modest request that members of the school’s faculty, teachers and support staff alike, as well as students and parents, should be provided opportunities to meet the candidates and given a voice in the selection process. We sincerely hope that such activities can begin immediately and, if the school department does not see fit to do so, that we deserve, at the very least, a prompt, thorough explanation of why we are being excluded…”
A week went by. Another week went by… by now you know the end of the story. On July 4 the faculty heard that a new headmaster had been chosen by the superintendent and her staff. The Snowden community had no input and no voice. And it was given no respect. In this new era of school reform where robust partnerships are encouraged, preferred, and seen as the only way to make progress in building a better school, our school district has fallen on its face. Once again.