This is the letter that was sent home with the students of Northeastern Highschool in South Vienna Ohio.
Dear Students & Families of NEHS:
It is with a heavy heart that I begin our lesson today. I come to you with my professional career being called into question by the administration of this school. I received word yesterday that my teaching contract for next year will not be renewed, simply put; fired. I have never been fired from one job in my life. Heartbroken and shocked, I begged the principals to give me one solid reason, one piece of evidence as to why they were making this decision, other than personal differences. They refused to do so.
As heart-broken as I am, I am going to continue to be passionate in teaching you through the remainder of this year. However, I cannot fathom leaving Northeastern, a place that I love. A place that I wake up excited to come every day. A place I have invested my life, my future with my wife, and our future family. I love sharing History with you every day. I love sharing in your joys and sorrows. I love being a part of this school, this football team, and being a witness to the amazing student body that we have here. I celebrate when you celebrate; I grieve for you when you grieve. I value each and every one of you as individuals and know that our world IS and will continue to be a better place because of the students at NEHS. Yes, we may have a run-down building, patchwork tiled hallways, and furniture that hasn’t been replaced since the 70s. But we have spirit, and heart, and I have ALWAYS been proud to be a member of this school. I am proud of each and every one of you and hope you know how much I care about your success.
My wife and I are writing this letter to you today in hopes that in some way, shape, or form, that I have impacted you. Though our principals are asking that my contract not be renewed, I WILL NOT go down without a fight. Because ALL OF YOU, each and every one, is worth fighting for. I love teaching you and feel I do a darn good job doing it. I hope you feel the same. If I have impacted your life in some way, through teaching, coaching, or mentoring, I am asking that you stand with me on April 17th, 2014 @ 6:00 P.M, at Kenton Ridge High School. This is the Board Meeting where I will have a chance to defend my teaching career. The Board will listen to me, and any person who is willing to speak on my behalf. I am asking that you attend, if you feel inclined to do so. There is strength in numbers and though it is so humbling of me to ask this of you, I would whole-heartedly appreciate any support you are able to give me. If you feel inclined to share a story, a letter, or even a few words as to how I have somehow impacted your life, I encourage you to do so. And if you don’t want to speak, I would still value you and your families present in the room. There is still hope I can stay here and be your History teacher, but to make this happen, I need your help.
I encourage you to share this letter with your families as well, and if your families would like to attend this meeting, I would welcome their support. Thank you for your consideration. Thank you for making my job a joy to come to each day. Thank you for sharing your lives with me and allowing me to be a part of yours. No matter what the outcome, please know that I will always be here for you if you ever need anything. I will always be proud of the young men and women you are becoming. It has been my sincere blessing to have shared in part of your lives and I will be forever grateful for that. I hope to see you on April 17th @ 6:00pm, at Kenton Ridge.
Mr. Greg Mann
P.S. A Note to Parents:
If you have a question about this Board Meeting, this process, or how to show your support, please feel to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call me (after school hours) at (863)370-0046. If you would like to voice your support but are unable to attend the meeting, please send a letter of support with your child to school, or contact the Board Office at (937)325-7615 and leave a message for a Board of Education member. Thank you so much.