Longtime educators are kicked to the curb, letter to editor, Times-Pic. 12/31/05
I am a 34-year veteran who has spent half of my entire life at a successful school. Now the restructuring experts are putting the final nail in the coffin of the New Orleans public schools. Employees are scattered all over Texas, Louisiana and Colorado and as far away as Maine. Many will just retire from the system and never return. We have put our blood and sweat into this system, and now we are being kicked to the curb.
At a meeting for principals back in August, Bill Roberti asked a question: “Do y’all read magazines?” No one said a word, including yours truly.
It kind of set the tone as to what was in store for the NOPS and all of its employees. Katrina made it worse, and the board can really save money.
I keep in touch with the majority of my staff, whom I call my extended family, and all of them miss New Orleans. Consider this if you will — educators were paid for two weeks and will be terminated at the end of January. Do you think employees will come back when they have been treated like dirt?
I miss my students so much it hurts. I miss my wonderful staff. I miss standing on the corner of Gayoso and Canal each morning to greet my students. Maybe one day soon, I can stand and see them getting off the streetcar and walking down the street.
Philmon Edwards Jr.
Warren Easton Fundamental High School
Now in Birmingham, Ala.