Oct 1, 2009

DC's Mckinley Technology High School Enrollment Reduced Intentionally

DC Principal David Pinder writes a letter to McKinley parents and students concerning the imminent layoffs of DC teachers and school based personnel. In order to see the pages, just click on each individual page to increase the size of the page.

Principal Pinder states in his September 28 letter that enrollment at McKinley High School has fallen from 890 students in '08-09 to 700 this school year. Mr. Pinder reports that enrollment was reduced intentionally at McKinley to allow for a safer and more secure environment. Are we to conclude that had Principal Pinder not intentionally reduced school enrollment - does this mean that he would not have to make such a large reduction of McKinley staff he alludes to in this letter ?

The contents of this letter appear sinister and lead me to believe that our budget deficit is a smokescreen for terminating teachers unnecessarily from our system by the Rhee administration. Feel free to share your thoughts as the plot thickens in this drama called DCPS .

Page 2 of the David Pinder letter to Mckinley parents and students

Posted by The Washington Teacher featuring Candi Peterson, Blogger in residence


Anonymous said...

This is interesting. Do you have any other "documents" from different schools?

Also, I'm curious to know if you've heard about any cuts being made yet. Have you heard about anything happening? Do you think it all goes down today?

Anonymous said...

Friday is the day most planned cuts in industry are carried out. It doesn't disupt the work-week, and in the case of teachers, gives them time to use the week-end to move out the teaching materials and equipment they bought themselves and brought to school.

Anonymous said...

Rumor update -- no RIF today because of Hawk1 Security removal from the schools.

One high school reports chaos this morning as students arriving tardy weren't processed efficiently because of lack of security.

Admins worried about further chaos throughout the day and especially at the end of the day if teachers are laid off.

The kids are fully aware that security is not present and that teachers are supposed to get the axe. Great learning atmosphere, eh?

Anonymous said...

Not to hijack this topic with another one...but why was Hawk 1 Security removed from the schools so abruptly?

Anonymous said...

If we accept the letter at face value, and assume that Mr. Pinder is both truthful and has the best interests of his kids in mind, then I think it's a little cynical to describe any of this as "sinister." It sounds to me that Mr. Pinder saw an opportunity to offer his kids a safer and more secure school, while reducing class sizes at the same time. Unfortunately, these benefits were accompanied by a significant cost - the loss of teachers through the RIF process. But for Mr. Pinder, it was a worthwhile cost given the benefits.

Now I don't know Mr. Pinder at all, and by no means am I suggesting that this trade-off is the right thing to do either in this case or more generally. But to me, it's at least a reasonable decision, just as refusing to make that trade-off is reasonable as well. So I'm very much inclined to give Mr. Pinder the benefit of the doubt and to NOT assume any bad - or sinister - intentions on his part.

Just my $0.02.

Anonymous said...

fact update - teachers RIFd

229 according to the Washington Post

Michael said...

McKinley is not built for 860 students. Last year was unsafe and classrooms were filled to the brim. A deliberate reduction in student population was completely justified and applauded by the staff. Principals are not to blame; Focus on the real problem. Today teachers were laid-off in the most inhumane process possible. Its over -- Let's remember that we are teachers, and it's about the kids. Not us.

Anonymous said...

RIF is complete at my school. The announcement was made just after school. It was very tense and we all feel that the matter should have been handled with more sensitivity.
I am sure some good teachers will lose their jobs today. That was not the case in my school but it does not make this situation any easier to swallow. News Flash Ms. Rhee!! Even subpar teachers are human beings. Moral in DCPS is at an all time low. No one is happy to see people lose their jobs in this manner, whether you believe that they should be in the classroom or not.

Anonymous said...

It's a sad day in DCPS, indeed: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/10/02/AR2009100202289.html

Sam said...

Mr. Pinder is a great human being and he has had many altercations with Rhee. I am pretty sure this was not his idea. After all, the principals live in fear for their jobs just as much as we do.

The Wash. Teacher responds to Michael said...


I think you need to check your facts about McKinley not being built for 860 students. My understanding is that this is not an accurate statement. Have you ever visited McKinley ? It's huge. I believe at one time they had even more than this number in their senior class alone.

No according to Rhee it's not about the students.

The Wash. Teacher said...

Reply to Anonymous @ 2:09 p.m.:

Hawk 1 had problems of their own I believe related to taxes. Check the internet to pull up recent articles on this subject.

Anonymous said...

Being at Tech Mr. Pinder made it the worst school ever. We might have high test scores but it is not by him or his vision plan. Pinder never thinks about the students just about how much money is coming in and the publicity the school gets. Pinder is a DUMB ASS! You may think that he did not have a choice but he did, he fire people who wasn't under his ass or who wasn’t going along with everything he said. You may think he is trying to better students’ education but really his not, the classes that are at Tech really doesn’t prepare you for college like that. They give you an idea of the work load and what they might be teaching but that’s it. We had many unnecessary classes. SAT Prep we did not have books for that class or even a teacher to later on in a semester. Tech is not what it is perceived to be, it’s all a big show that he put on during open house and meetings. Firing Ms. Gill was the most stupid and dumbest thing he could do and the registrar personnel and the other staff. Tech is going down as we speak. It only been open for five years and this year you can see it is decreasing with this principal. Dr. Gohl was good and his assistant principal Mr. Brandon and Mr. Demarke. This is when the school was at its best and when Mr. Pinder started but now, huh I don't know. I'll see at the reunion what McKinley Technology High School has become.