My Dear Parents,Jean Hoff, (Shepherd parent of Carolyn (pre-K) and Gretchen (1)) who tipped me off to the story has a brief profile of BenZion and her tenure:
You have heard by now, that the Shepherd school community has lost its principal today.
According to the Chancellor I am not the right fit to this community and it is best for the children that I am replaced.
I feel as if the flower has just began to bloom and was just stepped on.
It has been a privilege to get to know each of you. You are an amazing community and I applaud your commitment to high quality education in the district. I am truly sorry that I have disappointed you.
With much love and commitment,
THE HISTORY OF DR. BENZION'S TENURE AT SHEPHERD
Appointed by Rhee after a panel (parents, teachers, community members) interviewed 5 candidates in May or June of 2008. Started her job on July 1. Worked hard. Loved by children, parents, teachers (we can be a tough bunch and had 3 principals in the previous year after the permanent resigned, 2 or 3 interims. . . .)
She was willing to say that it was wrong to start the school year without a budget. She fought hard to get the funding for language teachers (French and Spanish) that had been promised to Shepherd along with our identification as an IB school. She has creative and great ideas. High standards and goals. Perhaps most impressive, she got the registration and student attendance up at the school. Downtown expected us to have 320 students, we at one point were as high as 370, now down to around 350, but quite a few families left when we had 3 full kindergarten classes and
downtown threatened to take back one of the K teachers (that's a story....)
Rhee's office told me on a phone call that she would be attending a meeting on Wed the 16th. When I pointed out that they must mean either Wed the 15th or Thurs the 16th, the person (202-442-5885) said the 16th at 6:30 pm, but another parent has been told the 15th.