Jan 30, 2010

Updated: DCPS Principal Reyes Gets Replaced At Spingarn Senior High

UPDATED: Wash. Post writer Bill Turque Confirms The Wash. Teacher's blog story: (click on link) "DCPS has confirmed Candi Peterson's weekend report in The Washington Teacher that Spingarn High School principal Blanca Reyes was replaced on Friday. No word yet on who will replace Washington. Lloyd Bryant will be the new assistant principal."

UPDATE ON SPINGARN'S TERMINATIONS













Gary Washington- Principal replacement at Spingarn Senior High School
So it seems that there is another new principal at Spingarn Senior High school which is located at 2500 Benning Road NE, Washington, DC 20001. All I know is that according to informants Spingarn's principal and assistant principal were terminated by Rhee and company this week. The administrative assistant, Ms. Gaither is now missing in action from the school. Inside sources are unclear if Ms. Gaither (pictured right) was fired or reassigned to the DCPS central office.
Insiders report that under the helm of new leader Principal Reyes the school was chaotic and she (Reyes) was frequently out of sight and in her office. Reyes is alleged to have had great difficulty in managing the school as well as had problems relating to the Spingarn staff and student body. Some report that Reyes' thick accent often made it difficult for students and staff to understand what she was saying.
It is reported that Gary Washington, formerly the principal of Choice Academy located at 1401 Brentwood Parkway, NE (202-673-8123) has been reassigned to take over Spingarn SHS. Blanca Reyes (pictured left) was the principal of Spingarn SHS. Morrall Thompson (pictured center) was the Assistant Principal and was reported to have been let go.
Confused yet by this game of musical chairs when it comes to replacing DCPS administrators. Well that's to be expected especially given that Rhee changes DC principals quite frequently.
Here's what folks are saying:
" Yes, Gary Washington will be the new principal at Spingarn High School. He didn't have any choice. Gary must take control and proceed on Monday with the staff, students and parents to gain order. Unfortunately, I didn't see any information about the ex-principal of Spingarn in the Washington Post. Rhee's new leader, Blanca Reyes from Spingarn High School was forced to leave Friday afternoon. Most likely former Principal Reyes will pop up somewhere else in DCPS like Noah Wepman, former CFO who is still working for DCPS on the ninth floor. These folks really don't get fired, they are hidden and protected. Rhee has failed again with another 'New Leader' who is clueless on how to manage an urban high school."
Posted by The Washington Teacher, featuring Candi Peterson - blogger in residence

52 comments:

Old School DCPS said...

I knew Gary Washington when he was at Shaw JHS, when it was a well-run, clean and organized school, in the now-closed building on Rhode Island Avenue. It was one of my first years of teaching and he was so supportive and helpful to me. I'll never forget him and his kind and effective leadership. I think he was trained under that old DCPS legend Percy Ellis (?), who some of you will remember.
I am pleasantly surprised that Rhee reached out to him, as he's not a new leader, but the kind of DCPS principals we used to have. Meanwhile, I know of many schools headed by new leaders where the students are buck wild and it's "all the teachers' fault", when in fact the new leader has no school leadership. Oh, but they went to a really good university...

life gets better said...

Candi,

Do you know why the principal was replaced and how long was he was there for?

My experience with the principals from New Leaders is that although they are youthful and confident, they are very inexperienced both in the classroom and in how to run organizations/ schools.

You can not underestimate how difficult a job it is to be a DCPS principal(especially with Rhee breathing down your neck demanding a rise in test scores every time they have a citywide principals' meeting). The intimidation and harshness from her adds another whole layer of challenge to the job.

Putting people in as principals with one year of on the job training as an assistant principal is a joke. But we know that Rhee does not think experience matters in a job as you can see when she tasks college interns to do jobs that should be performed by people with significant experience in the educational field. It is of course consistent with TFA's philosophy of on the job training for low income schools with mostly black or latino students.

A Veteran Teacher said...

I too can't wait to hear of the details leading to Blanca (not Bianca) Reyes' departure from Spingarn. What has been posted above about New Leaders has been my experience with them too. There's very little about them that impresses me. They just don't know how to get discipline and a rein on students. They follow the Rhee line, that its'all on the teacher and don't suspend or punish out of control kids like what used to be done.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Old School DCPS that Mr. Washington is supportive and helpful, a real leader. I also agree with Life Gets Better that New Leaders is not an effective way to build principals. To be perfectly blunt, New Leaders is equally as effective as it is to hire a failed third-year teacher to lead an entire school system.

Anonymous said...

Noah Wepman works on the 9th floor. I got that from accidentally by a reliable person.

Removing principals and others from the central office, is not surprising. After her media blunder, she needs to sure up DCPS so that the DC community can continue to believe her lies.

I have a few questions: How many teachers have quit since January 22, 2010? The filthy teacher has. How many teachers have retired so far this school year? How many principals have quit? How many principals have retired so far this school year?
These questions do not include the rif'd.

How many teachers/principals will resign prior to June 30, 2010? IMPACT will drive some teachers to quit.

I am waiting to see the outcome of this school year pertaining to DCPS employees.

I am also curious if the WAPO will shackle Bill Turque not allowing him to portray an more accurate pciture of DCPS than they want him too.

I'm curious, how about you.

Anonymous said...

Thick accent? Where the @#$ do they get these people? And to a school that probably is 100% African American? Though I don't really think ethnicity, race are big considerations for hiring and assigning staff, there are schools with a heavy Hispanic, Spanish-speaking presence where her skills would be a better match. What is Rhee thinking? Looks like she was set up for failure.

Anonymous said...

I am another teacher that resigned from the same school as "Filthy Teaching". SO far i believe that school's count it up to 5 since October and counting. Not to mention the turn over that will occur at the end of the year. My reasons for leaving were not IMPACT, but the inability to receive constructive feedback and support from the so-called "New Leaders". Whats sad is they rationalize people leaving and never self reflect. They could have taken the 5 resignations as an opportunity to engage in meaningful dialogue with their teachers.

and in the long run who is hurting... the kids.

Anonymous said...

Spingarn is a mess!!! Why would they put an inexperienced person in charge of that school? A school like that needs someone that knows what they are doing... What a shame that all of this continues to happen in DCPS.. it really makes us all look stupid! When will the madness end? MAY?

Old School DCPS said...

Just to clarify, New Leaders For New Schools, and its graduates called New Leaders, is similar to DCTF. It trains teachers to be principals, perhaps too briefly, and assigns them to schools. All the new leaders (meaning graduates from that principal training program) I've known or worked with have several things in common. They are trained to carefully analyze student data to improve instruction and raise test scores, a good thing. And they tend to be weak in the old-school butt kicking kind of discipline that some of our really disruptive students need. Things must have totally been off the chain at Spingarn to have this principal yanked in mid-year, as was Ms. Reyes' fate. I know a bunch of schools headed by new leaders where kids run around in the afternoon and there isn't much teaching and learning going on, yet those principals are still in their offices. And don't get me started on that most toxic of schools, Bell, now called CHEC.

Anonymous said...

Math Warmup...

Word Math Problem for today:
Rhee plus Reyes equal two rejects.

Math Equation for 1 minute:
1 Rhee + 1 Reyes = 2 rejects.

You have just "Race to the Top."

Please share other math examples, if you like.

Anonymous said...

check out: http://
spingarn.k12.dc.us/Bulletin/Weekly_Bulletin.pdf

This weekly bulletin is strange. The students and staff are addressed on the same page, as though they are looked (down) upon the same way.

Anonymous said...

Removing administrators in the middle of the year is nothing new. Rhee moved Gary because she did not have anyone else who could do the job. He is the only African American male with tenure that is left, trust me ones things are in order its bye, bye baby. The turnover rate in DCPS is overwhelming and unheard of in any other school district. If you do the data/math you will find that most of the New Leaders have difficulty in their position allowing violence to go up in DCPS. Most often principals are directed not to give reports on these incidents and the police chief covers up. Rhee moves the New Leaders right out, some may go most will stay. Consequently, the principal at McKinley HS violated the law and she did not move him. One of the Instructional Superintendent has a niece that failed as principal so they moved her to J.O. Wilson as AP until she get more training. When Rhee goes to jail she will have a whole lot of company besides Kevin.

Anonymous said...

Every problem Rhee has with personnel, she deserves. She had good princpals and teachers whom she discarded. Reginald Burke had Spingarn under control and was fired. And for what?

Rhee and Fenty are the reason DCPS is in so much chaos rignt now. Until something is done about them failure will run unchecked. You can look at the rest of the city for that.

Fenty is a fool. He didn't even have the streets cleaned properly yesterday. He was swimming in the middle of the day. I suppose he can't ride his bike anymore because he was caught doing that. While swimming he became upset and didn't want to follow the rules about removing his duffle bag. He has done so many foolish things he needs to be examined for fitness of duty as well.

Get rid of Fenty and you eliminate two fools at one time.

Anonymous said...

Removing administrators in the middle of the year is nothing new. Rhee moved Gary because she did not have anyone else who could do the job. He is the only African American male with tenure that is left, trust me once things are in order its bye, bye baby. The turnover rate in DCPS is overwhelming and unheard of in any other school district. If you do the data/math you will find that most of the New Leaders have difficulty in their position allowing violence to go up in DCPS. Most often principals are directed not to give reports on these incidents and the police chief covers up. Rhee moves the New Leaders right out, some may go most will stay. Consequently, the principal at McKinley HS violated the law and Rhee did not move him. One of the Instructional Superintendents has a niece that failed as principal so they moved her to J.O. Wilson as AP until she gets more training. When Rhee goes to jail she will have a whole lot of company besides Kevin.

life gets better said...

And Rhee is still parading around the country exaggerating about RIFing sexual predators?

Rhee is beyond incompetent. Almost three years in and there are disasters happening in schools all over the city. She has been able to keep a lid on some of the other schools that are a mess.

Read Filthy Teaching blog. Rhee is pushing out good teachers and alienating the rest.

Anonymous said...

I think Michelle Rhee will be forced out of office very soon. The one forcing her out will be her boss, Fenty. He can not keep her around much longer, because she will cost him his re-election bid.

Linda/RetiredTeacher said...

Were the teachers at the school instrumental in getting rid of these administrators? If so, bottle up their techniques and distribute them to other schools, especially the one where Reflective Educator taught.

Teachers and parents are very powerful when they stick together. Find ways to do it.

Linda/RetiredTeacher said...

Anonymous at 1:47 said:

" Most often principals are directed not to give reports on these [violent] incidents and the police chief covers up."

If this is factual, then this is your most powerful weapon against Rhee and her cohorts. Covering up a crime and pressuring witnesses not to report are serious crimes in themselves. Whenever this happens, go over the heads of Rhee and the Chief of Police. Report these incidents to journalists, politicians, the feds, and anyone else who will listen. A sharp attorney should be able to offer direction.

For the sake of the students, never allow violence to go unreported.

Sheila H. Gill said...

Hot Topic on the front page of Sunday Washington Post..BIG DROP-OFF FROM 2008 POLL
"Fenty's approval ratings plummet"

New Hot Topic waiting for the press...

"DCPS Chancellor Gets Replaced at DCPS Headquarters and Fenty hires a Real Superientendent"

Good Bye Chancellor Rhee. Mr. Gary Washington can't save your job, it's a little too late.

I'm confident tha Gary Washington will keep a lid on Spingarn High School. However, Mr. Washington will be earning his income NOW at Spingarn HS. Also, Mr. Washington will sleep like a baby once he gets home before midnight!!!

Hang in there Mr. Washington and bring the Riffed 15 educators back to Spingarn High!!!
Old school is cheering for you.

Anonymous said...

Corrections:

WAPO states Fenty's approval ratings plummets"


The article is on the front page of the WAPO. Wow!

Interesting article. Too bad that the number of people surveyed was too small to adequately represent the population in DC.

Also, I always have a concern when the margin of error is three or more percent.

Interesting!

Old School DCPS said...

Rhee better have her exit strategy ready because once Fenty is out (and I sure read the most recent polls published today), she'll be First Lady of Sacramento, CA!! Cause you can stick a fork in Fenty, he's done, and so will she be too. And take the MEs and IMPACT with you.

Kings said...

firing Rhee right now won't be enough to bring Fenty's approval ratings up, but maybe he's too dumb to know that.

Still, I bet the Federal City Council wants to keep their puppets Fenty and Rhee propped up long enough to find adequate replacements. They certainly blew it with their last choices.

The Wash. Teacher said...

Anonymous @ 12:53

I, too am curious but I don't have the answers to these questions as this is not a transparent administration.

Anonymous said...

What reason(s) did she have for firing the entire administration? Not that they're logical reasons but what were they?

Anonymous said...

Hi All,

We must remember, "LET GO, LET GOD! Vengeance is the LORD! Just keep praying and the wicked will cease!”

Anonymous said...

How about leaving God out of this mess - he/she doesn't seem to have been very involved up to now or things would be a lot better.

How about we look for Human solutions.

Lindsey said...

This stuff continues to give me a headache.

This chick has no long range plans other than teacher terminations, no strategy--not even an exit one; she moves employees around at anytime as if they are pieces to a game. And of course, the administrators simply end up in another job It has got to stop!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
I am another teacher that resigned from the same school as "Filthy Teaching".


What school is that?

Anonymous said...

Candi, it's up to you if you want to print or delete this post. But to answer the above question, I believe the school to be Bell multicultural, also known as Columbia Heights Educational Campus (CHEC), one really toxic place.

Anonymous said...

Principal Reyes WAS NOT a part of the New Leaders for New Schools program. If you would like to verify this, you can contact the Director of Principal Support Nataki Reynolds at nreynolds@nlns.org.

Anonymous said...

I hope y'all have been following Fenty's and now Rhee's poll numbers, as reported in Sunday and Monday's WaPo. Both of their approval ratings are in some kind of serious decline. And I'm not going to leave God out of it, as someone suggested. Thank you God and we may be delivered soon.

Harry said...

Assistant Principal Morral Thompson's picture and name are still at a Sprinarn HS web page that lists the new principal. So, contrary to your story, it looks like he stays.

Anonymous said...

Harry @ 3:18:

Check out the update about who the new VP is. The website for Spingarn still has Blanca Reyes, the former principal's picture as well as Mr. Thompson. Looks like they didn't have time to take it down yet.

Anonymous said...

Harry Potter, According to Bill Turque in the DC Schools Insider wrote that an assistant principal has been named. Seems like Candi was right on as usual.

Anonymous said...

I too, believe that God will deliver us from this horrible nightmare, called Reform. Fenty and Reinoso should both be sued for destroying our children's' lives. I am so sad and ashamed of how our city has been portrayed across this country, because of Michelle-"I Was Never Qualified"-Rhee's big mouth.

Anonymous said...

I just pulled this off of Indeed.com a employment website:

Looks like Instructional Superintendents are biting the dust as well.

Instructional Superintendent - Cluster III
Washington DC Public Schools - Washington, DC
model leadership for elementary schools, K-8 schools... laid out by the Five-Year Plan and the Master Education Plan. Supervises and evaluates school principals...
From CareerBuilder - 3 days ago -

Let's see who MR put into that position. Sure it is being advertised, but if history serves us right, an interview will occur but she will put whom she wants in the position.

123 123 said...

Nice story as for me. I'd like to read something more concerning that topic. Thnx for giving that data.
Joan Stepsen

Anonymous said...

Timothy Williams is the Cluster III assistant superintendent whose job is being advertised. He used to be princpal at Raymond Elementary School. He is the only black male assistant superintendent. As for the "new" qualifications, Chad Ferguson and John Davis probably do not have ten to fifteen years experience in educational leadership. As old as Barbara Adderley looks she must have twice that. We all know about King Wilhoyte and that his wife got a job from Rhee after Meria Carstarpheren fired Cheryl Hiers Wilhoyte.

Sick Of It said...

I saw a job advertisement for teaching fellows mentors or coaches with a requirement of as little as 2 years' experience. Is this some kind of joke? Unfortunately, it's serious. This summer the DC Teaching Fellows had cooperating teachers who they trained under. Most all of them were DCTF alums. Veteran teachers were not selected.

Anonymous said...

So does that mean Williams is leaving? He had retired as a principal then came back. I don't envy his job as an ass't sup working directly under Rhee.

Anonymous said...

Congrats on the scoop.
Rogue Teacher

Anonymous said...

First we had TFA then DCTF and have you seen the new ads for the Urban Teacher Center one year new program to train teachers tied to raising student test scores, www.urbanteachercenter.org. Where will this all end? Of course the market for this program in DC and Baltimore!!! Will there be any veteran teachers left in DCPS. Everyone is jumping on the bandwagon and trying to make money off our children, they deserve better.

Anonymous said...

Too bad employees in the DC government are not a representation of it residents. I should be able to obtain a position in my hometown if qualified. My credentials should speak for its self, otherwise it is discrimination.

dcteacher said...

Let us not forget Rhee's move to push Patrick Pope out of Hardy! Certainly he does not fit her model- he's white,middle aged, experienced and successful at running a school!

Anonymous said...

Let's be realistic, Patrick Pope is old school (he is not on her team). His down fall stems from the neighboring community wants and desires (not needs).

It is easier to manipulate an new or inexperience person than one who designed and operated a school for a long period of time. He not an as* kisser. That's the other problem.

Patrick Pope is not in MR plans.

Anonymous said...

Candi,

What are hearing about the new team at Macfarland?

Anonymous said...

Bureaucratic measures are not only meaningless, but often distorting to individual students. The efforts in education are simply those of multiple single individuals seeking the necessary trade-offs and efficiencies in teaching the many; and there are many types of many. Education is hard, but education is not policy. Forcing education to fit policy is a fool's game. There are many fools. (http://voices.washingtonpost.com/class-struggle/2010/02/readers_question_the_challenge.html#more)

The Wash. Teacher said...

I have not heard anything about McFarland to date. Please enlighten me.

I Can't Believe It!! said...

Candi, the union needs to do something about this and protest the decision to open schools tomorrow, even 2 hours late. Most of us are still snowed in. My car in my garage is clean but the I can't get out of the alley!! Plus my street hasn't been plowed. How are our children expected to walk on those sidewalks tomorrow? What is Rhee thinking!!!

Anonymous said...

Macfarland was restructured twice, two years in a row. The faculty is nearly all incredibly young and inexperienced. Maybe three teachers in the building have more than 5 yeas experience. Is this turning out to be another "Shaw MS" miracle?

Anonymous said...

I've met an ESL or ELL teacher at MacFarland who barely speaks English? What's that about or is there a bilingual program I'm not aware of, where this individual is the Spanish-dominant teacher?

Anonymous said...

I am just now seeing this.....I worked at Spingarn when this whole ordeal went down, and still work there now. I want to make one correction to the story that has not been completely corrected in the comments below.

Mr. Thompson was not "fired" at all, he simply switched places with Mr. Bryant. Thompson went to Dunbar, Bryant to Spingarn. I believe the reason for this was that Mr. Washington "required" that he be allowed to bring Bryant on board with him when he came on, and they said ok as long as we can send Thompson over to Dunbar to replace him there.

Also, Mrs. Gaither was let go from Spingarn and sent to the Cluster Office downtown. She SHOULD have been fired instead though, as one of her roles at Spingarn before she was sent packing was serving as the school timekeeper. She was well known for screwing up people's time ($$$) on purpose and charging their leave incorrectly...

Regarding Reyes, the comment about her disappearing into her office when things got tough was certainly spot on, and she was very affraid of meeting with and talking to parents - something that is a recipe for disaster for sure. However, the comment about her being set up for failure was also dead on, I will leave it at that!