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Support Principal Schollmeier

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October 2021

Dear President Smeaton and School Board Members,

On September 28, 2021, Nick Schollmeier was terminated without cause from his 8 year leadership position as Dillingham Elementary School (DES) Principal. The Dillingham City School District (DCSD) released a public statement citing it “determined it is in the best interests of the Dillingham Elementary School and Collective District to make a change in leadership.” Further comments from DCSD were declined.

This change in leadership was a shock to the community and teachers within DES for they had no role in DCSD’s collective decision making process. Principal Schollmeier’s career in DES over the last 8 years has been highlighted by a multitude of positive changes including:

Teacher Retention through Teacher Empowerment

● Staff Retention 86% in SY 20-21 and SY 19-20

● 8 years of sustained leadership staff with Mr. Schollmeier and Mr. Tweet

● Overwhelming Teacher Union support

● Teacher/Job satisfaction

Positive Culture & Climate at Dillingham Elementary School

● Beaver Tails

● Glasses Program

● Million Word Club

● Classy Lunch

● Continuation of the Mediator Program

● Students of the Week

● Weekly assemblies with positive student recognition

● Increased student participation in afterschool activities

● Increased parent involvement in school programs

● Increased school pride and ownership in students

Increased student performance at grade level for Math & Reading

● Increased MAP test scores consistently over the last 8 years (excluding COVID impacts)

● Positive behavior models resulting in decreased office referrals maximizing time in the classroom learning

● Reading specialist program improvement with structure and staff, data tracking, and parent involvement

● Academic Interventionists - Math & Reading specialist program for Migrant Students multi-district collaboration

The question remains who does this change in leadership serve? Our administration at the superintendent level does not have the same effective longevity within this district, he has applied for other superintendent positions in the state this past year, and it calls into question whether this action of termination was a necessity or if a remediation could have been enacted first? To lose our Principal at this stage during the school year, upending our teachers expectations and our student’s consistency seems premature and extreme. It brings one to question, if this action of termination was necessary and in the interest of our “Collective District,” as Superintendent Dr. Johnson has stated, or if a remediation could and should have been enacted first.

This action creates a toxic culture of uncertainty within the district and our students and school staff deserve better. I support further investigation and action to reinstate Principal Schollmeier as soon as possible.


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