School board gets an earful from Norwich teachers

NORWICH – School board members may have gotten more than they bargained for when they asked district teachers to join them in a goal-setting discussion Tuesday afternoon. During a special Norwich City School Board of Education meeting, members of the Norwich Educators Organization (NEO) discussed both issues they feel are benefiting the district and those they feel may be hampering education.

Sue Fenton, president of NEO, told of a lack of communication between herself and Superintendent Gerard O’Sullivan on a bi-weekly basis. Bi-weekly meetings in previous years were scheduled to address matters regarding teachers, and since September, these meetings have not occurred regularly, she said. Fenton also said seven teachers have left the district since the beginning of the year – one retired, one left to work at state education, one left to go to another district and four left without any other position to go to.

Dr. Ed Erickson called the current lack of communication with board members “startling.” He said only once in his years in the district has a board member come to the school to talk with him about educational issues. Erickson said he feels there are layers of administration he needs to go through to get in contact with the people he would really like to address matters with. He said he feels marginalized by the district and also that the board is not listening to the full spectrum of what is going on.

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