When Chapter Leader Marilyn Martinez came back to CPE 1 completely cleared of charges on Monday, apparently Principal Garg couldn't face her. The UFT Delegate Catlin Preston is still facing charges and will hopefully also be cleared.
It took an extraordinary effort from this school community but this is a true victory for parents, teachers and students. A well organized group of teachers, parents and other activists can still be successful in fighting an abusive principal, even if a small minority of teachers and parents support the principal.
Perhaps the highly publicized removal of the principal from Townsend Harris High School and now the reasignment of CPE 1's principal will give hope to teachers, other staff, parents and students struggling against anti-union administrators throughout the system. It takes a real collective effort from a school community but it is possible to stand up to a principal who is clearly not willing to work with parents and teachers. If someone is not a good fit for a school community, he/she should be reassigned or not assigned in the first place.
It is my humble opinion based on what I have heard that CPE 1 and Townsend Harris are just the tip of the iceberg. Many other principals need to be removed or at least reigned in.
Here is the letter from Acting Supt Dolores Esposito via Ed Notes:
Dear CPE 1 Community,
Since arriving at CPE 1 yesterday, I have met with members of the school community including students, school staff and families.
I want to share an important update. Principal Garg has chosen to take a new position in the Department of Education and will not continue as the Principal of CPE1. This is effective immediately. During her tenure at CPE 1, she has focused on serving the needs of the whole child while providing a high quality education.
During the transition, I will continue to serve as Acting Superintendent in charge of CPE 1. Together we will focus on identifying the next leader for this school in accordance with Chancellor's Regulations. My primary focus continues to be delivering a high quality education for all students in a safe, supportive and nurturing environment. With nearly 30 years as an educator and as a former graduate and adjunct professor of Bank Street College, I will use my experience in progressive education to support the school.
I look forward to working together with everyone at CPE1 to advance equity of opportunity and excellence for all students.