Remove Donna Hargens as JCPS Superintendent
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Dr. Donna Hargens has failed to execute her duties as Superintendent of Jefferson County Public Schools in good faith and with good result:
Whereas Dr. Hargens has devalued our teachers, among the most valuable resources of our community, by her actions and statements, criticizing them as overpaid while protecting the salaries of Stephanie Malone, et. al.; and encouraging a bloated administrative staff in her own office and at the highest levels of JCPS, and done this despite her own statement that JCPS is not facing a budgetary crisis that would indicate a need for teacher salary reductions.
Whereas Dr. Hargens has demonstrated a lack of concern for school discipline in her actions to support the weakening of the Student Code of Conduct, and in personnel and facility decisions concerning alternative schools in our district.
Whereas Dr. Hargens has taken action to cause JCPS to extend her personal autonomy into the hiring of administrators, including principals of schools, removing authority from Site-Based Decision Making committees and placing that authority in her own hands.
Whereas Dr. Hargens has created an atmosphere of no accountability through cronyism via personnel assignments of failed administrators to positions not subject to SBDM review, to wit, Jerry Keepers, Joey Riddle, Ken Moeller, Donald Dillard, DeLena Alexander and Stacie Gamble.
Whereas a trend of improvement in JCPS performance metrics under Dr. Hargens has reversed itself dramatically in terms of school performance goals, graduation rates and individual student test scores, most pointedly the regression of 23 JCPS schools from meeting statewide standards to operations below-standard.
As Dr. Hargens consolidates authority over JCPS in her office, the performance of our school system continues to drop. Our children are less safe than ever before and Dr. Hargens proposes to weaken discipline standards, presumably to reduce student suspension numbers and give the appearance of effective leadership. Our teachers are under attack at a time when we face a teacher shortage and should be working to attract the best and brightest to JCPS. And in the face of declining academic performance, weakening discipline, and a lack of accountability, Dr. Hargens is asking for more authority to perpetuate her practices of cronyism in hiring and the manipulation of circumstances that reflect her own job performance.
We, the undersigned concerned citizens of Jefferson County, hold that Dr. Donna Hargens is failing our community as the leader of our education system. We demand that the Jefferson County Board of Education review Dr. Hargens' employment status with regards to the termination of her contract. Immediately.
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