Superintendent David Dude addresses mid-year departure of teachers at F.AVE
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Three teachers recently departed Decatur’s 4/5 Academy at Fifth Avenue.
Their departures left some parents wondering whether they were connected.
Superintendent David Dude said the timing of the teachers leaving is a coincidence, saying they left for different reasons.
“It’s unfortunate that they are all at the same school because it makes it appear to be a pattern when it is not,” Dude said, adding that he understands parents’ concerns.
Here’s his full statement about the teachers leaving F.AVE:
Recently there have been several inquiries regarding the departure of three teachers from F.AVE all occurring at approximately the same time, around the last week of February and the first week of March. These inquiries are out of legitimate concerns that there may be a problem at F.AVE that needs to be addressed. It would not be unusual for a District the size of Decatur to have several instances of teachers resigning for personal reasons or needing to take extended leave in a given school year, but typically they would occur at different times and/or different locations. While we are limited in each circumstance as to what we can say, and we do not publicly comment on personnel matters, I am aware of each circumstance, and I can assure concerned parties that these departures were not related to employee dissatisfaction with City Schools of Decatur nor were they related to any of the individuals’ teaching capabilities or interactions with students.
The teachers elected to leave during the school year for very different reasons. Contracted employees that wish to break their contract with City Schools of Decatur can do so through provisions that assess an early termination penalty and require the District to report that action to the Georgia Professional Standards Commission. In the cases of early termination of contracts, mentioned above, this practice was enforced. There are many different reasons for an individual to feel a need to break a contract, and we believe it is in the best interest of students, in the vast majority of situations, to NOT try to keep a teacher in a classroom when they feel the need to not be there. Instead, we follow our provisions for contract termination and provide appropriate support to the classroom.
The administrative team at F.AVE is working hard to make these three transitions as non-disruptive as possible for the students and will continue monitoring those classrooms throughout the remainder of the school year. With support from other adults in their lives as well, these students will continue to thrive and will finish this school year strong.
– Superintendent David Dude