Letters to the Editor
September 5, 2013

To the Editor:
What has happened to Fillmore High School?
I started working at FHS 27 years ago. It was struggling to be a quality institution. Through hard work and cooperation by the teachers, staff, and management it made great progress. There was a steady growth in student test scores, multiple 6 year WASC accreditations, increased numbers of students going on to colleges, and several students went to prestigious institutions such as Harvard, Stanford, and the military academies. Staff morale was high.
These achievements are being quickly eroded by missteps of the high school and district leadership. FHS API dropped 21 points. FHS school-wide interventions were eliminated. And most troubling is the sudden change is math course offerings which have put fully half of the FHS seniors in serious danger of not graduating this coming June.
Staff morale has plummeted. The principal received an 80% no confidence vote from the teachers. All but two department chairs resigned last year. Weekly teacher collaboration meetings have been abandoned, which hinders planning for the upcoming accreditation.
These issues have been brought to the school board yet corrective action has not been taken. So I ask these questions of the school board:
Why was it necessary to hire a principal with a documented record of harassment lawsuits against him?
Why did the current principal with such a poor record receive a $5000 bonus when no previous principal has received a bonus?
Why has the board turned a blind eye to the serious issues brought by dedicated, experienced teachers?
Karen Ashim, Retired Head Counselor from FHS