Update: Now I hear that both the nurses will not be returning! This is also a huge loss to the school as these 2 woman are completely dedicated to the health and well being of not only all the students, but the staff and even younger siblings. They work tirelessly to make sure that every person is cared for. I especially worry about those students with health issues, as these ladies are a comfort to their parents.
I, too, am very sickened to hear that so many wonderful teachers who have dedicated their lives to Catholic education have not been offered contracts for next year and others treated so badly that they will not be returning. The actions of the current principal and her group of cohorts, along with the priest, who oversees the school are sickening, contradictory to the mission statement and completely unchristian. Terrific, dedicated office staff have quit, teachers treated so badly they've left mid-year or staying until June only because of their love of the students and now teachers who dedicate their lives to these students and families are gone. For the Diocese to allow this is disgusting and they don't even care! There are many options to educate your child in Phoenix, SJB should NOT be one of them.
The new administration has no clue what they are throwing away. They tried ZERO to understand what was WORKING already at the school that had tight bonds as evidenced by the high academic results the students have achieved in HS and by the community that worked together with teachers, students, and parents. . The failure by the Pastor and the Superintendent (Diocese) to do anything to the decimation caused to the school and to the community for the older students is unacceptable. The spirit of St. John Bosco is GONE. Watching out for the best interest of the child was not at the root of all of this "change." Pride and a lacking leadership skills was at the root of the destruction of the upper grades and the dismissal of the teachers. According to Marzano, a leading researcher in education, "effective leadership for change is characterized by specific behaviors that enhance interpersonal relationships: optimism, honesty, and consideration." Honesty is nil as many things were revealed after the re-registration fees were due such as the teachers not being renewed, PE only by grade not by gender, the removal of the performing arts program for 7/8th grade and who know what else will come, maybe no more IA's ? There is no honesty and definitely no consideration for the staff, families but especially for the upper grade students who seemed to be affected the most by all the decisions.
This administration is letting many of the wonderful teachers of SJB go. The teachers were the heart and soul of this school. Teachers such as Mr. & Mrs. Byrnes, Mrs. Hernandez, and Mrs. Debons are some of the best teachers we have had. This administration has done nothing to show compassion, caring, and empathy particularly in how they have treated the staff. Shameful!
We have a great school but the new principal has the whole school in turmoil. We have lost 12 or more teachers because they were fired or refused to come back. I would not consider sending your children to this school until the current administration has been replaced.
It’s a shame the new principal is getting backlash for doing her job: taking the lead and running the school – instead of running it on autopilot or worse, into the ground, which is sadly the state the school has gotten to over the past several years as enrollment AND retention continued to decline. Staffing decisions are hard, and it’s understandable the relationships families have built with teachers over the years. But logic, students’ best interests and survival of the school have to come into play here. It’s no secret many Catholic schools are in trouble everywhere, not just SJB and not just in AZ. If they’re not shutting their doors completely, smart administrators are making serious changes to compete academically while retaining strong communities and faith-filled environments, the hallmarks of Catholic schools. Our family supports SJB’s administration for their business sense and courage to head the school in a new, necessary direction.
I am currently a high school student who attended SJB for numerous years. SJB is where I grew up. It was my home. I became the person I am today because of the people that surrounded me. My great friends and the caring teachers especially. I grew up surrounded by a great community who truly cared about me. But this community is being torn apart. Why should I care, you might ask, SJB is a part of my past now, right? Wrong. I owe so much to the school for what it has done for me.
I write this hoping that the new principal, or someone else of importance at the school reads this. Here is a review of some of the teachers who I particularly believe shouldn’t be asked to leave, although I really believe that none of them should be. 1. Mr. and Mrs. Byrnes. The Byrnes’ are amazing people, and amazing teachers. Mr. Byrnes, although quite daunting at first, is one of the most sincere people I have ever met. He taught us morals in class, along with social studies and religion. I would like to know what he has done to deserve being asked to leave. Same with Mrs. Byrnes. First of all, she’s a hilarious woman full of great jokes. She made us smile while learning in math class! The Byrnes’ have dedicated so much of their lives to SJB, it is absolutely cruel to force them to leave. Plus, firing BOTH of them? Think about how wrong that is! 2. Ms. Whalen. I’ll admit, I wasn’t the biggest Ms. Whalen fan while I was at school, but only because she was a hard teacher. She was one of the most dedicated people ever! She lives and breathes what she teaches! She is so passionate about science! And she is also the best teacher I have ever had at SJB, she prepared me so much for high school! She is truly an amazing person. 3. Mrs. Avila. Mrs. Avila is one of the nicest people I have ever met. Ask any kid in 5th grade and up who their favorite teacher is. Chances are that it will be Mrs. Avila. Her class is so fun and awesome! It was the highlight of my day every time I had Spanish! I also learned a lot from her class, and am doing very well in Spanish. She prepared me for high school as well!
Maybe I’m more passionate about these particular teachers because I had them for two years instead of one… I don’t know. But what I do know is that these and all of the other teachers don’t deserve this. Let our teachers stay.