Friday, May 13, 2011

So Why Was Floe Fired?

The district, feeling the heat, has taken a couple of steps in the Floe firing. One, the Superintendent is NOT going to install a permanent principal by the end of the school year but will put in an interim.  

Two, they released information to the Times about the academic record at Ingraham.  

Ingraham High Principal Martin Floe was ousted because the school's test scores were "stagnant," and the school was the second-lowest-performing high school in the Seattle district, interim Seattle Superintendent Susan Enfield said.

On Thursday, Enfield released a breakdown of Ingraham's test scores, which showed that minority students did especially poorly on last year's 10th-grade high-school proficiency exam. For example, only 5 percent of African-American students, 16 percent of Latino students and 3 percent of bilingual students passed the math test.

Ingraham test scores started to decline after 2007.  So what could be the reason for this decline and could it all be on Martin Floe?  Did the test change?  Yes, the WASL got dumped.   Was this across the board decline?  No, stats from UW show that Ingraham students do as well as Garfield, Ballard and Roosevelt in many subjects.  

This is NOT to excuse the low scores of the minority students nor to say it's to be expected.  It IS to be expected to do better across the board.  However, what the reasons are that the scores are there are important.  That no high school can say they are doing that much better makes you wonder about Floe being singled out.

Because any one of us can go through the entire district and find elementary, middle and high school principals whose schools' scores for minority students are stagnant or in decline.  Are they as respected by staff and parents as Martin Floe?  Did they see through a new program implementation successfully?  Were they asked to bring in yet another program?  No, but Martin Floe did and with open arms.  

Why aren't they being fired?  And is Ingraham in decline?

Nevins said Ingraham's emphasis on giving all students access to higher-level classes was one of the reasons it made Newsweek magazine's list of 1,500 top high schools in 2009. It ranked 940th.

Balance.  The big picture.  Buy in from parents and staff.  These are all important things to consider before you fire a principal. 

The parents/staff that met with Dr. Enfield yesterday said this:

We had a cordial discussion, however, we're as mystified coming out as we were going in," teacher David Edelman told the group afterward.

I'm glad Mr. Floe is considering an appeal.  I hope his union supports him.  I hope that every step of this firing is examined by those who should be considering the appeal - the Board.  

I noted that Charlie brought this forth:

From School Board Policy B61.00:

"The Board of Directors shall:...

Elect principals and teachers upon recommendation of the Superintendent."

The Board retains final authority to hire principals.

In addition, the Board has ALL of the duties, authority and responsibility. They LEND some of those duties and authority to the superintendent, but they reserve the right to recall any or all of those duties and authority.

What's interesting the is reply that Harium gave an Ingraham parent:

I understand how popular he is with many in the Ingraham community. The final decision to not renew his contract rest with Dr. Enfield as the superintendent. I can tell you that she did not make this decision lightly. Principals work under the supervision of the superintendent. The board does not control the hiring or firing of principals. I have talked with the superintendent about this issue and the numerous emails the board has received so she understands the depth of caring around Mr. Floe.

57 comments:

Eager for Elections said...

Who is running against Harium for school board?

Melissa Westbrook said...

Michelle Buetow, a parent from TOPS.
http://www.buetowforschoolboard.com/

After many deep conversations with her, I am supporting Michelle I'll be writing a profile of her and other candidates as they come forward.

Maureen said...

Someone who regularly posts as 'Ed Doc' in the Seattle Times Comments just said: As a resident of the north end, I am becoming inclined to throw my hat in the ring to replace the current Board Member that appears to be a rubber stamp for anything and everything that comes from district headquarters culture of cronyism and inept management of our taxpayer dollars.


Anyone know who that could be?

Bird said...

The board does not control the hiring or firing of principals.

It does, however, control the hiring and firing of superintendents.

Josh Hayes said...

Harium also indicated that should Martin pursue an appeal (and it appears he will), that appeal is to the Board. They won't be able to punt on it.

It's also worth pointing out that Ingraham in general, and Martin in particular, go to great lengths to keep marginal kids in school. The feeling is that a kid who scrapes through and graduates is better off than a kid who drops out. That means that there will be a lot of kids who struggle in testing, but are at least IN school TO struggle.

Moreover, more than 1/3 of the kids at IHS come from homes where English is not the primarly language spoken. This is not a community that maps onto that of, say, Ballard, or Roosevelt.

KSG said...

I'd heard from Portland teachers that Enfield will probably be a problem. She generally wasn't well regarded there.

And Vicki Phillips, the Super that Enfield worked under, was considered especially poor.

The scary thing is that it looks like history is repeating, as Vicki's reputation was one who creates a mess, but left (to join the Gates Foundation) rather than cleaning up what she created. Here we go, but now in Seattle.

The legacy of these two, hopefully is not the undoing of Northwest public education.

emeraldkity said...

I noticed that using data ( graduation rates et al) shown in an article in Seattle Met Magazine last fall, showed Ingraham to actually have better or at least similar graduation &/or pass rates ( of core classes) as schools with similar student bodies, ( like Franklin, Chief Sealth, Cleveland)

So then why is Floe singled out?

SolvayGirl1972 said...

Did anyone hear his interview on KING-5 last night? It was past my bedtime.

Bird said...

Perhaps this is too conspiratorial, but wasn't Ingraham about to have a bunch of APP students come to attend the new accelerated IB program?

If you oust the principal immediately prior to that, then you can claim you raised achievement when the student population changes to one skewed toward students who excel at test taking.

Probably not in itself the reason for Floe's removal, but something to watch for if his dismisal stands.

emeraldkity said...

Ingraham has 32 IB courses, even Garfield only has 15 AP courses.

For example- Cleveland & Franklin have similar #s
Chief Sealth 69.8% non white
Ingraham 69.1% non white
Chief Sealth SAT test scores - math 466, writing 436, critical reading462
Ingraham math 534,writing, 510, critical reading 530
Chief Sealth FRL students 58.4%
Ingraham 56.3% FRL


This info was in the December 2010 issue of Seattle Metropolitan magazine- got it off their website

SolvayGirl1972 said...

It looks like the posts from Thursday are all gone.

Here's what a parent who attended the IB meeting at RBHS had to say (copied from the Rainier Valley POst). It does not bode well for SE families with current 7–8th graders.

SusanH 05.11.11 at 8:12 am
I went to the meeting. It was utterly bizarre. I was the only parent there (the only other attendee was a current math teacher at RBHS wanting to clarify his role).

The meeting wasn’t at all what was suggested here (“discuss the potential for an IB program”). Instead, the IB guy from the district though he was conducting one of a series of small groups to explore various tenets of the IB program. This topic was the Creativity-Action-Service. It was all touchy-feely, let’s brainstorm together. I was confused and just wanted to know: am I going to be able to send my college-bound children to Rainier Beach High School?

In the end, it looks like SPS is definitely moving forward with IB accreditation. Only catch is it takes 2 full years to submit the application and get approved, so if all goes according to plan, the program would start in the 2013/2014 school year. The program is only offered Junior and Senior years, so it wouldn’t affect the class offerings for Freshmen and Sophomores. The idea is to create a “Freshman Academy”, where all 9th graders take classes with only 9th graders, with the emphasis being, “let’s learn what it takes to be in high school”. I wonder if there will be any advanced level classes within this structure, or if it will all be grade-level basics? Don’t know.

SolvayGirl1972 said...

I assume the "current math teacher" was Michael Rice.

old salt said...

Josh,

I wondered about that too. Does IHS have a lower drop out rate and how would that affect scores.

Why was this principal fired for a 3% pass rate when 2 other high schools had zero kids in special ed pass MSP math? Is this new standard being applied in a consistent & tranparent manner? If so, I would expect to see many more firings this week.

Melissa Westbrook said...

And guess who had the SPS data on Ingraham (and sent out an e-mail to her list)? That would be Sara Morris at the Alliance.

I guess the district wants someone on their side even if the data is not reflective of Mr. Floe's entire record.

Pam MacEwan is the new head of the Board of Directors of the Alliance. Drop her a line if you want her to have a fuller picture of the situation.

Macewan.p@ghc.org 

Anonymous said...

BUETOW, BUETOW, BUETOW!

My guess is that she'll at least care enough to spell and grammar check her replies to constituents.

He's been phoning it in for way too long. Time for rubber-stampers to find a new dais to sit on, where my kids futures aren't outsourced to standardization and testing freaks.

WSEADAWG

Mona said...

I suppose it never crosses Enfield's mind that those crappy scores are from the crappy district math curriculum? My child would not have passed this year's MSP if I hadn't tutored in trad-math, at home. If these kids don't have tutoring/Kumon/extra help, there is no way they're ever going to pass the high school proficiency exam, no matter who the principal might be.

I was hoping to send her back to SPS for the IB program at Ingraham, but this doesn't move by Enfield inspire my confidence.

dan dempsey said...

How interesting the Enfield Math comments have become.

Background

(1) The 2008 WA Math standards were tested for the first time with OSPI MSP Math testing Spring of 2010 for grade 3 through 8.

(2) At grade 10th the Math HSPE test replaced the WASL but for one year only. The HSPE did NOT test the 2008 Math Standards ... it was another test of the Bergeson's now left over nonsense.

(3) This year end of course Algebra testing begins ... which should be good stuff

(4) This year end of course Geometry testing begins, which will be a mess.

------
How interesting that Dr. Enfield is so interested in improvement but has nothing really planned to improve anything.

D 43, a New promotion/ non-promotion policy that does not even mention interventions for struggling students is up for approval at Wed 18th Board meeting.

The content poor Reader's and Writer's workshops are mandated throughout the district.

The NWEA/MAP test from Spring 2010 shows the massive failure of the district to serve low income kids in math.
-----

Martin Floe is hardly the problem. It appears that Dr. Enfield's complete inability to apply relevant data intelligently is a huge continuing problem.

When Enfield was CAO she took two board members with her to visit NT Sacramento, which she believed to be a STEM high school. There were 6 NTN High Schools in CA and none of them were STEM schools .... No problem she wrote Action Reports recommending NTN get an $800,000 contract for Cleveland STEM option high school.
-----
Her command of data and applying it successfully thus far does not extend much further than she has two feet and wears two shoes most of the time.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, "Susan", for revealing
yourself so quickly and concisely.
You have made a move so much like
MGL that everyone's PTSD has been
re-triggered and we are not pleased.

Martin Floe will prevail. Susan
and Bree are on personal "Race to the Top" missions and people are fed up with people like you.

Martin Floe has obviously
been on a real mission and vocation, unlike these poseurs, who didn't even have the sense to fly under the radar until January.

signed, what about Ted Howard

Anonymous said...

I know there have been many suggestions for a course of action, but can anyone list again what actions a frustrated parent should take? We have written letters and attended therally yesterday - is there more we can do? We are just sick aboutr htis turn of events, and are so disappointed in Enfield -

parent of 3 SPS students

Anonymous said...

There are over 950 members on the Friends of Martin Floe Facebook page - this is amazing! How can this be used to help???

signed, a parent

Chris S. said...

Another interesting point that emerged for me from the Sea. Times comments was how the stats on tests and graduation rates might interact. Specifically, it was suggested that keeping kids in school might lower test scores. We know from around the country one tactic for dealing with NCLB is "disappearing" students who don't have good testing potential.

In any case, this is an excellent and timely lesson on the dangers of high-stakes testing. I'm glad the Times is covering it.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Go to any of the School Board directors community meetings tomorrow. Show up in large numbers and tell them you want them to vote to reverse this decision. If Floe appeals, it will go to the Board.

Write to the Alliance for Education's head of the Board of Directors. Her e-mail is in one of my comments on this thread.

Write to the Seattle Times, KUOW's Phyllis Fletcher, the Slog's Riya Bhattacharjee, Publicola.

Call Brian Callanan at Fox news (674-1439), Essex Porter at KIRO news (728-7158), Meg Coyle at KING-5 and Gary Davis at KPLU 922-1026.

Tell them to cover this story and show up for the Board meeting on Wednesday.

Sign up to speak at the Board meeting.

Then SHOW UP to the Board meeting and be heard.

Anonymous said...

This is a seminal case I think the entire community needs to weigh in on. This could happen to anyone, and for no good reason other than to pad the resumes of narcissists and sadists.

So much for standardized testing being "just a factor" in evaluations. Its the be-all-and-end-all for the easily-corrupted.

Bad poker play by Enfield. Didn't just signal her tells; she flopped her cards on the table way, way too soon. Alert!: Another Ed Reformer in the tank with Arne & the Oligarchs.

Exposing the fakes and posers has become so easy its getting boring. "Students First" and other trite labels are the equivalent of Fox News's "Fair and Balanced" label: Saying it does not make it so.

Would the Real Educators at JSCEE please stand up?

WSEADAWG

Kathy said...

I'm actively seeking an individual to run against Peter Maier- District 1.

Anyone from the Ingraham area interested? Individuals must live within District 1 boundaries; map is available on the SPS web-site

If interested, please contact me at KSmith1965@aol.com

kid not like the others said...

It is tough to justify their actions when they publically use certain data points that don't stand up under analysis. It reminds me of a year only one student who failed two or more classes was on the offical retention list when there were at least 20 who met the same criteria. It looks suspicious and "motivated" by something other than what they claim publically.

Jan said...

I keep thinking of the flack teachers took last year, when MGJ demanded that they start being accountable for test scores. Their concerns were pooh poohed, with statements like -- well, we will look at LOTS of things. Test scores will only be one measure, and not the main one, etc. etc. etc. Teachers were not fools. They KNEW those were lies. It is just too damn easy for lazy, stupid administrators to get what they want by grabbing the nearest test score and wielding it like a club.

So -- here we are. There is LOTS of data denoting support from parents, support from staff, testimonials from students whose lives were changed for the better, etc. etc. AND there is the School Report -- which, as Charlie points out -- shows Ingraham NOWHERE NEAR the bottom. But, there is other data out there that could be misused to arbitrarily get rid of this guy -- so they used it. Why on EARTH would anyone think that the same thing would not be (and probably is being) done to teachers?
As for misused data?
Well,
(1) Ingrahams numbers are not much different from many other schools and, when you correlate them with FRL and/or language of origin, they may be better.
2. ALL these tests test different groups each year -- which makes them flawed (even if the tests had merit in the first place, which they don't).
3. There was a change of tests (WASL to HSPE) over the past year, and there have been changes in the standards that were not reflected in the tests. The SSD was happy last year, when abysmal scores came out, to say -- well, none of this means anything, because it is the first year of a new test, so we don't really have a basis for comparison. Funny, they seemed to have no problem with the basis for comparison when it came to Mr. Floe!
4. There were BETTER data available (such as the comparison of how Ingraham kids to at UW compared to other schools). This data too has to be interpreted (what percentage of the class went there, etc.) and if the kids for whom he is getting fired weren't at the UW, then it may not matter as much -- but the Districts statements so far do not reflect any attempt to do any deep analysis of data.
5. Finally, the whole idea of using high stakes tests is just flat out nuts. Kids in the US got good educations for YEARS without this stuff. Testing has a huge reilability problem, even when it is only used for its intended purposes. When it is MISused (to determine whether kids graduate, to evaluate whether teachers are good teachers or not, etc.), the test scores are just plain dreck.

This is going to be a hard one, because it is NOT just this superintendent, or this board. It's a national disease, and it will take concerted, determined effort to push back against the deep pocketed interests that want to siphon public education dollars from classrooms to their own well lined pockets.

Maureen said...

Here's a link to the District 1 map that Kathy referenced above, in case you want to see if you are eligible to run against Peter Maier.

Northender said...

@Maureen - not that I'm in the slightest bit qualified, but dang -missed it by 1 block ;o) - thanks for posting the link...hmmm... who do I know who's on the "right" block.

Maureen said...

Oh Well, Ed Doc now says (in ST comments): I currently reside in Region II and believe it would be one more year before I could throw my hat in the ring to become a member of the Board of Directors to work for the change our schools need and our children deserve.

Apparently doesn't know that that seat is up this year and does have one challenger.


Where does Martin Floe live? He seems pretty popular!

Anonymous said...

Funny Maureen that you should mention Martin Floe for school board because we thought the same thing. It would be a real change to have a principal or a teacher run for one of these seats. Talk about fresh perspective.

Reader

Anonymous said...

How 'bout someone do an analysis of the numbers that are being purportedly used to fire Floe?

I simply don't get it -- I'm slow to get into these personnel disputes, because so often decisions are made based on information we don't have access to. But in this case, it seems like they are removing a principal based on student test scores. Is that really all there is to the story? Was Floe warned? Given an opportunity to improve on their metric? Did he refuse? (for example, on principled grounds, like the worry that one can improve scores by squeezing failing children out?)

(zb)

BioTech Mom said...

Can anyone cite a previous example where a principal was fired solely because of test scores?

SolvayGirl1972 said...

Has anyone speculated that Floe might have pushed back against hiring TFA teachers? WOuldn't the test scores make IHS a candidate for TFA?

dan dempsey said...

Just a Hunch but ....

It looks to me that Floe was likely fired for his insistence that schools need to assist kids. His resistance to top down edits from the Autocrats, meant he needed to be fired.

Melissa Westbrook said...

ZB, I'm sure Principal Floe was warned that he was not getting his teachers in line properly for high school curriculum alignment. That the Ex Director made numerous unannounced visits (and to classrooms where the teachers were not on probation) probably meant something was up.

I'm sure Principal Floe tried to point out that they were in alignment but maybe he was allowing the teachers too much leeway for the district to feel satisfied he was fully supporting the alignment.

Maybe he was insubordinate in his support of teachers to the Ex Director.

That's my take based on my sources and that the test scores his school has could be found at numerous schools throughout this district. Are we headed for mass firings?

I don't think TFA had anything to do with it but I guess anything is possible.

Bird said...

So what's the next step here?

It's hard to imagine that Enfield anticipated this level of push back and press for this. She doesn't seem prepared with a compelling argument.

She may regret the decision, but can she back down at this point? Seems unlikely to me; she looses credibility as a strong leader, particularly among the ed elite.

So what happens next? Floe finds some other school district who wants a dedicated, beloved principal? He appeals? Anyone have any sense of how that would go? Is there any history of appeals we can look to? Would the board vote on the appeal? If so, would that likely happen before or after the next school board election?

Really, this whole thing just hurts Enfield so many ways, I have a hard time imagining what kind of vacuum she is in where she couldn't see the damage she was doing to herself when she made this decision.

Chris S. said...

It would be easy and totally refreshing for Enfield to reverse herself. All she has to is say the got an incomplete picture from one of her direct reports (with the initials BD), say she has learned a lesson, and remove that direct report.

PS: I'm reading "Mindset" by Carol Dweck - mistakes are not bad - they are an opportunity to learn!

Anonymous said...

Chris S - that would be SO wonderful!

I also think attention should be place don the timing of Enfield's decision - she fired Mr. Floe in the middle of the rigorous IB exams many kids had been preparing for all year. If scores are important - and if the needs of kids come first - how does this make sense? This has been so disruptive to the students - who can study and focus under these consitions? The kids have testing next week as well. I really don't see how Enfeld can say that this was a carefully considered decision with the needs of students in mind.

I know my son's scores will not be as strong as they could have been - had to be at the rally at the distict the night before the history exam -

Sined, disappointed parent of IB student

Anonymous said...

Does it occur to anyone that both Dr. Enfield and Bree Dessault have had six different jobs in the last ten years and that neither has held any job for as much as three years?

Anonymous said...

I just knew that when more info came out it would come down to closing the #@$&()^% achievement gap. That seems to be the only thing the district cares about these days, and it's rolling downhill to schools, so that's all schools care about too, (the $10K bonus to principals closing the gap doesn't help either) regardless of how small that gap really is or how much improvement is being made.

Clearly closing the gap is an admirable goal and one we should all work to achieve. But unless the impact that poverty has on the achivement gap is addressed, we can throw money hand over fist to this problem and bring in every superstar new principal and we still won't see improvement. (as defined by SPS via improved test scores)

It's contrary to reason to cut counselors, IAs, services etc to the students who need it the most and still expect gains.

I can hear Lucy saying it now .... SPS, you blockhead

--questioning SPS

Seattle-Ed2010 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Seattle-Ed2010 said...

Seattle-Ed2010 said...

And is it true that TFA-er Chrissie Coxon, is already planning to leave West Seattle Elementary?

(http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2013366091_westseattlepilot07m.html)

Stu said...

Clearly closing the gap is an admirable goal and one we should all work to achieve.

Well, getting a bunch of APP kids at Ingraham next year will help change some numbers so, though the actual gap won't change, at least they can point to the improvement in tests scores "in just one year" of the new anointed principal.

I feel as though I end up writing the same phrase each year: "I don't mean to sound jaded but..." followed by some ridiculous conspiracy theory about moving advanced kids around to help building test scores. The thing is, each time they make one of these ridiculous moves, the actual reasons they give fly in the face of any logic or quantifiable evidence. The ONLY conclusion is "cup and balls."

stu

Anonymous said...

I know exactly what you mean Stu. Exactly.

Watching John Stewart skewer Fox News and Hannity two nights ago, for like the 100th time, for their lies and hypocrisy, reminded me a lot of what we do on this blog: Repeatedly call bulls#!t and torpedo district "logic and reasoning."

As Stewart said, "it's not even fun anymore." But I guess it goes with the territory.

WSEADAWG

Stu said...

The Hannity stuff the other night was amazing . . . right on point.

Without dragging politics into this too much, SPS reminds me a bit of the Republican party. Like or dislike the message, they're unified and keep repeating the same phrases until the people start to believe them as fact.

With SPS, they trot out the same excuses or selling points over and over, make promises about community participation, say they'll demand accountability, tell us that they've learned their lesson . . . and a majority of the people here, as in a voting majority, drink the cool aid.

Repeat a lie enough times, it becomes the truth.

stu

PS - I swear that my word verification below this line is "pityus"

another mom said...

Susan Enfield is now running away from the notion that so-called stagnant test scores lead to the firing of Mr. Floe. Go to the Friends of Martin Floe FB page and read the two letters -one from a teacher who met with her on Thursday, and her response. They too long to copy and paste here.

However, if test scores did not factor into the decision why include them in a press release?Clearly it was an attempt to persuade public opinion that this decision was a correct one. Can you say smear? Someone else on this blog noted a while back that a fish rots from the head down. It just gets worse.

Anonymous said...

The problem with the schores that the district sent out in their Presser is that they are not independently verifiable.

OSPI does not list scores when fewer than a given cutoff belong to that group.

Coindicentally, Hispanic and Limited English are below that cutoff for the district as a whole (and for Ingraham in specific) for many, and in some cases all of those years.

If the data cannot be independently verified, it is scientifically invalid.

A Science Teacher

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting those TFA/UW docs, SPSLeaks. Interesting that TFA mentions that Puget Sound is already a top 5 preference for TFA kids, among over 40 choices around the country. Makes sense, though, that Ivy League grads would rather move to a highly affluent area of the country with lots of corporate opportunities than to higher-poverty area with lower-performing districts, like the Mississippi Delta region, St. Louis, etc. Makes sense that they're hellbent on setting up shop here (except for the thing about them wanting to reach the most disadvantaged students, but whatev).

--signed "yeah, I wanted to live here too!"

Anonymous said...

another mom,

Susan Enfield is now running away from the notion that so-called stagnant test scores lead to the firing of Mr. Floe. Go to the Friends of Martin Floe FB page and read the two letters -one from a teacher who met with her on Thursday, and her response. They too long to copy and paste here.

Nah, they're not too long if you break them up into 2 or 3 posts, which is done all the time.

No need to keep this information hidden behind a facebook wall.

- Ixnay on the Acebookfay.

moon mom said...

From: Edelman, David
Sent: Fri 5/13/2011 8:18 PM
To: Apostle, Paul A
Cc: Enfield, Susan A
Subject: Thank you
Dear Mr. Apostle,

I want to thank you and Dr. Enfield for taking time out from your busy schedules to meet with us on Thursday. Because I felt somewhat bewildered by the end of the meeting, I neglected to properly thank you for meeting with us on relatively short notice.

As you know, we were disappointed to hear, repeatedly, that you and Dr. Enfield could not divulge the reasons that Mr. Floe’s contract was non-renewed. Imagine my surprise this morning when I read the following in The Seattle Times:
“Ingraham High Principal Martin Floe was ousted because the school's test scores were ‘stagnant,’ and the school was the second-lowest-performing high school in the Seattle district, interim Seattle Superintendent Susan Enfield said.”
I later called one of the authors of the article, Katherine Long, and she divulged to me that the district had issued a press release at about four o’clock Thursday to the effect that Mr. Floe had been fired for “stagnant” test scores. She then said that she checked with Teresa Wippel, and she confirmed that Dr. Enfield did intend to say that the cause of Mr. Floe’s dismissal was “stagnant” test scores.
I find this odd on two accounts. My understanding is that Mr. Floe cannot be “ousted” for test scores alone. The evaluation process is far more complex than that, and to be fired for poor performance requires that a principal be deficient in a number of areas. It strikes me as a falsehood to claim that the cause of his termination was based solely on test scores.
Second, I find it odd—if it is true—that Dr. Enfield would feel free to inform the press why Mr. Floe was dismissed but would deny, to our faces, the exact same information released not two hours before our visit. Please try to imagine my dismay at the disrespectful way that Ingraham staff continues to be treated by the district.
As I said in the meeting, I believe that we are all united by our passion for student learning. I believe that this passion—ultimately rooted in our common humanity—binds us to generations that will long outlive us and creates the shared hope without which we cannot long survive.
From now on, starting on Monday, let this ideal be foremost in our minds as we forge a mutual understanding of how we can best further the education of the young people whose care should be our sacred trust.
Sincerely,
David Edelman

moon mom said...

-From Facebook Pt 2
----Original Message-----
From: Enfield, Susan A
Sent: Fri 5/13/2011 8:45 PM
To: Edelman, David; Apostle, Paul A
Cc: larogers1@seattlepublicschools.org
Subject: RE: Thank you

David,
I am glad that we had the chance to meet. Thank you for taking the time.
Unfortunately, the Times article was not correct. While we did share Ingraham's test scores since we were getting questions about the school's performance, I never said that these scores were the reason for my decision. They were not. Additionally, I never spoke with Katherine Long so I am puzzled why she would attribute any quotes on this matter to me.
I have not, and will not, reveal the information that was part of the evaluation process and eventual decision. I am legally bound not to do so.
I share your commitment to serving our students as best we can and I appreciate all that you do.
I look forward to seeing you next week.
Susan

Anonymous said...

Stu & All: I don't want to drag politics into this either. Although I think most know I hate both parties, just one more than the other.

But it's the Campaign Tactics employed by the Ed Reformers pushing their agenda that's disturbing and downright scary. You have a huge propaganda effort aimed at selling Ed Reform, actual evidence and research be damned. From MSNBC's "Education Nation" series that featured all Ed Reformers, from A to Z, without a single voice in opposition or any parents at any time, to the constant drumbeat of support by the Seattle Times, to the Astro-Turf groups that morph into newly created voting blocks each time the legislature is in session. "Our Schools Coalition" for example. "Stand For Children" is nothing but a right wing, anti-union, anti-teacher organization. If they stand for anything else, please let me know. I haven't seen it yet.

And the list goes on and on as the reformer's message dominates the airwaves, drowning out parents, communities, and actual kids.

The opposition is getting organized, and many of us simply want to get the truth out, which is that much if not most of the "research" cited by reformers is murky and questionable at best, and at worst, is completely erroneous and irrelevant. But the Times will repeatedly say "research shows, research shows, research shows..." Well, research once "showed" the earth was flat. Because the "research" was bogus, and nobody seems to know the difference between CORRELATION and CAUSATION in this community. Reading the comments on the Times pages features nothing but anecdotes and slogans, yet we believe we're a literate, smart town. Sheesh! Really? Then why do so many keep falling for these slogan based, pie-in-the-sky, expensive, ineffective "reforms" that fizzle out after a year or two?

The medium truly is the message. It's time we stop trusting anyone with reform alliances and demand they "show their work" before we hand them any more decision-making power. Epic Fail, Enfield. Epic Fail.

WSEADAWG

WenD said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
WenD said...

RE: David Edelman’s letter to Enfield and her reply, is Enfield accusing the Seattle Times and Katherine Long of lying?

Here’s a link to the Times story, corrected version. The only correction is the number of staff who signed a letter of support for Floe: 103 signers instead of 54.

http://o.seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/education/2015040430_ingraham13m.html

No correction of Enfield’s reason:

“Ingraham High Principal Martin Floe was ousted because the school's test scores were "stagnant”, and the school was the second-lowest-performing high school in the Seattle district, interim Seattle Superintendent Susan Enfield said.”

“On Thursday, Enfield released a breakdown of Ingraham's test scores, which showed that minority students did especially poorly on last year's 10th-grade high-school proficiency exam.”

First, I read that Floe didn’t "adequately support staff." Now test scores. If she’s “legally bound not to reveal information pertinent to her decision,” why can’t she get her story straight? Is her confusion due to Floe's plan for appeal?

For years, SPS has reassigned poorly performing or poorly matched principals, often ending in the option of a job downtown. Why would a school leader like Floe, seemingly immune to the yearly churn of principals suddenly, be cut instead of moved?

In Enfield's position of authority (authoritae), you don't change your story if you tell the truth the first time. You state your reason once. That's it.

I agree with SolvayGirl72 and Yeah, I wanted to live here too. TFA could have a lot of to with Floe’s firing. If TFA alum Bree Dusseault is Ingraham's Exec Director, why isn’t her head on the block? She walks away with a lateral move.

I don't think TFA has proven that their 5-weeks trained, politically certified teachers are closing the achievement gap anywhere they go, but it's their pretext for moving unqualified teachers into schools. They've never proven that barely trained teachers are the best teachers for students who need support to stay in school.

If TFA corps want to work as teaching assistants, that would make sense, but leading a class, then leading a school? No.

Floe has been doing the work. If keeping students in school is the main priority, then as others have said, yes, your scores will reflect different levels of achievement.

MGJ wanted TFA. Enfield wants TFA. Exec Directors like TFA alum Bree Dussault want it. Thanks to SPSLeaks, we now know that the big brains at the UW want it. Hapless Board directors like Maier can't answer questions about the TFA price tag. They just want a bigger hiring pool. It's a done deal.

dan dempsey said...

Edelman wrote in his letter:

"I later called one of the authors of the article, Katherine Long, and she divulged to me that the district had issued a press release at about four o’clock Thursday to the effect that Mr. Floe had been fired for “stagnant” test scores. She then said that she checked with Teresa Wippel, and she confirmed that Dr. Enfield did intend to say that the cause of Mr. Floe’s dismissal was “stagnant” test scores."

Dr. Enfield responded:

David,

... "Additionally, I never spoke with Katherine Long so I am puzzled why she would attribute any quotes on this matter to me. "

===============

Dear Dr. Enfield do not be puzzled. Those of us with reading comprehension and half a clue can solve your puzzlement. ... THE PRESS RELEASE and Teresa Wippel. Did you read Mr. Edleman's letter or just write a reply.

see above from Edelman's letter...
the district had issued a press release at about four o’clock Thursday to the effect that Mr. Floe had been fired for “stagnant” test scores. She then said that she checked with Teresa Wippel, and she confirmed that Dr. Enfield did intend to say that the cause of Mr. Floe’s dismissal was “stagnant” test scores.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone considered whether Floe doesn't buy into this administration's continued adgenda of unethically getting rid of its highest paid teachers? Maybe he hasn't made his quota of discriminating against his highest salaried teachers like many other principals are doing - using unethical bullying and failing, dishonest evaluations to wear them down so they "retire" or fires them? Reasons given for his firing do not add up as other very poor principals keep their jobs. To fire him in the midst of IB testing and IB placements for next year, his success at keeping at risk kids in school, and the fact that staff, parents, and students want him to stay - as always, decisions are not about what is best for our kids. Fed Up

LXN said...

The Empire is crumbling. More ammo for your update. This was posted on the Friends of Floe Facebook page and sent to Ingraham staff.



The following resolution was passed by staff at Ballard High School this afternoon:

"We educators at Ballard High School support the staff and community of Ingraham High School in their collective effort to retain their principal, Martin Floe.

We also recognize the importance of a supportive leader in an educational community, and we have great concerns about the effect the firing will have on the greater Ingraham community. The transition to the APP/IB program and Ingraham’s efforts to narrow the achievement gap.

We believe important school leadership decisions should include parents, students, staff and community members. Sudden and apparently arbitrary decisions undermine the public trust."

Thanks, Ballard. Solidarity Forever!