Dr. Walkley, the BTA is both disappointed and disheartened by the recent Spring 2015 transfers of numerous members of their unit. Your blatant disregard for process leaves us little choice but to make known to you both our displeasure for your decision and how we could possibly work more collaboratively in the future. While we recognize your ultimate authority to make these decisions we also recognize that decisions are usually arrived at through consultation and input from several different sources. The following aspects of your decision-making are extremely troublesome to the BTA:
1. Contractual Provisions
There was a total disregard for the contractual provisions of article 14 section B regarding the transfer process.
2. The Midnight Date of the Transfers
This leads us to believe that you intentionally wanted to subjugate the process so that teachers would have less time to appeal the decision.
3. A Lack of Administrative Input
and in several cases the transfers carried out in direct contrast to what was being recommended by the building principals. This shows a total lack of respect with the professionals that run these buildings on a daily basis
4. The Lack of Professional Notification
No one should ever find out through a mass email that they have been transferred. It shows a total lack of respect for individuals and their privacy. Individual meetings should always be held with face-to-face contact and with a reasonable explanation for why the person is being transferred. Not everyone can be wonderful and an asset to the building they are being transferred to.
5. The Number of Transfers
There were over 20 involuntary transfers in a district that has shown progress in the last five years. The upheaval caused by this mass movement is never a good administrative decision and is particularly difficult to understand at this juncture in time
The following suggestions would make for more professional transitions in the future if transfers are actually needed:
1. Address the issues regarding lack of performance with the individual professionals rather and simply transferring them to some other building
2. Treat the process with respect. Meet with individuals in private and explain the reasons for and the goals involved in making these transfers. As professionals we deserve the respect
3. Collaborate with rather than dictate to your building administrators. The building administrators have a great pulse on what is going on in their buildings. Utilize their expertise and involve coordinators in the process.
4. Have a plan in place before the absolute last minute for contractual adherence. Professionals should do not have to be sitting on the edge of their seat waiting to see if the axe with fall of them.
The negative fallout from the decision about transfers this past spring will be felt for years to come. After only the first year as the Superintendent many staff members have come to not trust you as a result of this rash and authoritarian decision and your remarks over the past few Superintendent meetings you have continually emphasized a culture of care respect. You hold everyone to this standard but obviously believe that it does not apply to you. If anything, you have shown a total disregard for how professionals should be treated in the workplace. If your goal is to get us off of any list that we may presently be on you may find it more successful to treat us as partners rather than adversaries drawing on our sense of professionalism and our sense of vocation will make all of our jobs much easier and rewarding. Instead of building bridges we’ve chosen to build barriers. In these difficult educational times we teachers have more than enough challenges. Please do not add our relationship with the Superintendent to this list.