Petition to Retain Beloved Teacher Miss Nicole

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Petition to Retain Beloved Teacher Miss Nicole


This petition is to demand the retention of Montessori teacher, Miss Nicole Cozart. Miss Nicole is the most experienced Montessori teacher at Urban Montessori Charter School (UMCS), with nearly two decades of experience. She formerly taught at a prestigious Montessori private school where she was the Director of Curriculum. As a exemplar Montessori teacher, she was chosen as one of two teachers to participate in the 100th Celebration of American Montessori Society, representing the model “glass classroom” for others to study.


Since her arrival at UMSC in 2014, she has made a tremendous impact on the students, parents, and staff alike. As a natural leader, Miss Nicole has been mentoring teachers new to the school, allowing them to shadow her during instruction and offering the support necessary to succeed. She ran the summer instruction for the entire school and created the curriculum, which the school values and wants to continue using. She is truly loved by all, in fact, the teacher slated to replace her has been the lead in a campaign of teachers petitioning to keep Miss Nicole at UMCS.


The community has shown overwhelming support with the news of her dismissal. A student of hers commented, “I want to have THIS class with THESE teachers for the rest of my life!!” The parent of this child adds, “We relished our good fortune. We felt we had made a sound decision to support her through the tough years since it brought her to Miss Nicole’s class. My general impression of Miss Nicole was that of a highly skilled, deeply passionate educator whose clear experience and natural warmth all combined to manifest in as close to perfection in a teacher as we could ever wish for.” Another parent lends emphatic support for Miss Nicole, “Her strong experience in education was and still is remarkable with the children in her class as well as the parents from whom she gained trust and love. The positive feedback she received reflects well on the whole school.”

 

We want to know why this teacher, who has far more Montessori experience than anybody else on staff, is loved by both students and parents, is a mentor and leader to other teachers, has more students in her class than any other, is kind, loving, and passionate, and has made a difference in countless students lives, and is a strong Black woman, is being let go? Who made this decision and on what grounds? What was the process and timeframe in which issues were communicated with Miss Nicole before this startling decision was made? We demand answers and deserve to know!


Most importantly, we need to keep Miss Nicole and feel not renewing her contract would be catastrophic for the culture of the school and possibly something we cannot recover from. Inversely, retaining Miss Nicole would rejuvenate the trust of students, parents, and staff in the administration. It would show that leadership is listening to the needs of the students and care about the growth of these young scholars and the school as a whole.


Created by: Sadie Cooper (parent of a child in Miss Nicole’s “Redwood” grades 4-6)


Addressed to:

Davis Castillo, Principal of Urban Montessori Charter School davidc@urbanmontessori.org


Greg Klein, Board Chair of Urban Montessori Charter School

greg@urbanmontessori.org


David Patterson, Director of Alameda County Office of Education

dpatterson@acoe.org


Shanthi Gonzales, Oakland Unified School District Board Director, District 6

Shanthi.Gonzales@ousd.org

 

 



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