• Choosing the turnaround model is simply wrong. 
  • Teachers have been asking for supports for years – Firing at least 50% of the teachers is not showing them support. It’s blaming them for that, which is out of their control. 
  • I don’t see any outrage. I even saw smiles on some of your faces. Needs cannot be met if morale is low. Telling people you’re going to fire them will not improve morale.
  • It’s shameful that the School Committee is going along with firing hard working educators.

45 thoughts on “Lou St. John’s comments to the School Committee

  1. Why do we allow people with no real commitment to this city and its people to irrevocably damage our schools? A carpetbagger with a data knife has full authority to continue her gutting.

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  2. Teachers are the constant. Students are the variable. Why is this a difficult concept to grasp. Let's swap student bodies with Newton for a semester and see how our test scores look.

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  3. As usual Lou, your speech was right on point. Glad to see so many teachers at the meeting last night. Next meeting I am hoping that the number will double.Glad I was a part of the solidarity and the standing ovation.

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  4. Joe Teacher…..your comment is one of the best I've ever read! No one in their right mind should ever attend a fundraiser for any politician who does not support educators. I, too, am disappointed in Bruce Oliveira. I thought for a moment that he would be different. Oh – it just dawned on me….his wife teaches at NBHS. I guess he has to be the mayor's puppet so she can keep her job.

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  5. Even if/when the scores go up—it's all a money game. If the teachers had been listened to for the last ten years—this could have been avoided. They needed resources that were never provided. Now the new staff will get them and we will all be AMAZED at the progress! This choice is ALL about the grant funding….don't let her fool you!

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  6. All I see is a group of people who are out of touch and have their own vested interests. They are not their to help the kids. They are helping themselves and should not have the honor of being called a member of the school committee.

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  7. We SHOULD have had a vote of no confidence. We SHOULD have all called in and let these buffoons take charge of our classrooms. Things will only get worse folks. Looks like it's time to re-think things and have another emergency meeting.

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  8. Now that the bully is firing so many of our colleagues, are we going to stand up now? We need to show our support and take this city back for us, our fellow teachers, and the students!

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  9. The teachers at NBHS are being punished by the actions of a few. Anyone with a memory knows the main culprit in allowing discipline at the high school to disintegrate was the push to eliminate west side so “all kids” can learn was Pollack. And shame on Francis for neutering the headmaster when it came to necessary discipline issues. Shame on Lang for running Larry O out of the business office. How did that work out? The school committee really hasnt taken the responsibility it should and is letting teachers fall on their swords. I have a legitimate question so someone please answer. The school department was given 4 options for the level 4 status of the high school. If the turnaround model is the most damaging then which of the other 3 is the best choice?

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  10. I am a parent and I am totally disgusted by the actions of these individual's.I know that most of them would not be sitting on that committee if it hadn't been for the generosity of the teachers of New Bedford giving of their time and money to them to help them get elected.

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  11. So Bruce is protecting his wife by not voting to save her job? That makes no sense. No wonder you then fantasize that he has a secret deal.

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  12. Bruce Oliveira was Mitchell's right hand man when he ran for mayor. And….it was Mitchell who appointed B.O. to fill Clark's unfinished term. How can he be anything BUT a rubber stamp for Mitchell??

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  13. its saddens me to see this contentious relationship between what is perceived as the city vs. the teachers. I am a teacher. I am not fighting with anyone over politics. I love my job. I love kids and I will do my job to the best of my ability as I have been doing for almost 30 years. It's life changing to that see what I put my entire heart and soul into, is kicking me to the curb after a lifetime of service.

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  14. Why so protective of Mr O.? I like the guy, but why can't questions be asked?He finished serving Clark's term…and then he still did not actually need to be elected this time? He was just given a “pass”…on the ballot his name stood alone…automatic position. Very odd.

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  15. To the pieces of fecal matter that are demonstrating the utmost level of ignorance: Do not presume to believe that you think you know what kind of a teacher Mrs. Oliveira is. You do not work with her and if you do then shame on you all the more. You are no better than the school committee members and administrators that blame teachers for the ills of this district. You are claiming that this woman needs her husband to save her job because she is not good enough to do it herself? What a disgusting and hypocritical statement! In one breath you are claiming that we all need to stick together and the next condemning another teacher who held her job long before her husband was on the school committee. She is a damn fine teacher and works harder than most I know and I WOULD KNOW because I work with her. Why don't you focus your blame on where it should be and while you are at it, take a good long look at yourselves in the mirror because there are clearly issues that need to be rectified.

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  16. I don't know why Mayor Mitchell is so worried about the 3 minute time allotted for the Public Comment section of the School Committee when he didn't seem to be worried about being close to 20 minutes late for the School Committee meeting. When he came into the meeting he was actually smiling. Dr. Finnerty should have started the meeting as he did once before!

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  17. If there is one person on the school committee who understands what is going on at NBHS, it is Bruce Oliveira! As for him being there to save his wife's job, that is LUDICROUS! He got the job before NBHS was named a level 4 school, and if you know his wife, she DESERVES to keep her job! You could not find a harder working more caring teacher in the school. Come on! Place the blame where it needs to be placed– at the smirking members who think it is somehow funny, or just desserts, that dedicated teachers will lose their jobs! I was at the meeting today at NBHS. My colleagues were crying! It is an insult that we are being blamed for kids who come to us unable to read and do simple math! But now WE lose our jobs because THEY can't do the work. What kind of insanity is that!!

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  18. I teach at the Middle School level. My heart goes out to all those teachers at NBHS that are suffering the ultimate abuse in losing their jobs. I will continue to hope that as a union and a city, we will somehow, someway figure out how to all stand as one to prevent this insanity from continuing.

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  19. I don't see one post that says Mrs. O is a bad teacher and needs her husbands protection…I still don't get the defensive position on the matter. Why can't questions be asked about this? It makes sense that Mr. O should have abstained, if only to remove any question of conflict of interest.

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  20. The whole concept of playing the name game in this situation is preposterous. If we sat here and took the same amount of effort we are using to bash on the faculty into teaching our students, we might not be a level 4 school. If we know we are an asset to this school, and are educating our children properly and to the best of our ability, then why are we worried about loosing our jobs? Everyone sitting here rattling on about nonsense with a conflict of interest is clearly concerned over their own job loss. Let's all be the mature individuals we were when we got the job, and focus on what truly matters in this situation, providing the best education for our students. If you lose your job, you lose your job. We need to educate our children and if our current teachers can not provide that service, then there is the door.

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  21. Mr. Oliveira's name was on the ballot for the balance of Clark's unexpired term. Newcomers who threw their hats in the ring opted for the full term, rather than part of a term. He didn't get a “pass”, there was just no opposition.

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  22. Our School Committee has let us down, is a major part of the problems in our district, and has lead us into this mess. For years we have been asking for books, materials, new computers and other technology for our classrooms. The answer we keep hearing is “there is no money in the budget.” This year's FY14 budget they laid-off teachers, paras, and staff to reduce the Salary and Wages account; however, they (SC) found money to hire top level administrators. Guess they are more interest in having this ship being top heavy than having teachers in the classroom.

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  23. Whether or not you are a good teacher does not matter in the fiasco! 85 teachers at NBHS are going! We do not have 85 bad teachers in our school. We have no information on what will happen or how to reapply should we wish to. 85 people will be unemployed! What happens to our sick days, our longevity should we be moved? We will need to interview at other schools in our community if we hold that certification! worse case scenario, I loose my house, my retirement, everything! Merry Christmas to all those that think this is wonderful. Hopefully you are gainfully employed because I see welfare in my future!

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  24. The post stating so much confidence because they see themselves as a “good teacher” has a false sense of security I thinks. There is something very wrong with this whole picture and if you think any kind of logic will prevail, I believe you will be sorely mistaken. As a responding post states, we do not have 85 bad teachers! This deranged woman will hit the bull eye, but it is on the wrong target. The problem is not the teachers!

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