Bridgeport — Paul Vallas hasn’t yet returned phone calls to comment on a superior court ruling denying him the opportunity to stay as superintendent of the city school district while an appeal is made of a decision that he is unqualified to serve in the role. But he did send out a letter to staff today.
Here is what it says:
I know that many of you have heard about the lower court’s ruling yesterday and are wondering about what will happen next. Let me assure you that the judge’s ruling, which was not unexpected, is being appealed to a higher court where we are confident we will prevail. In the meantime, my status has not changed and I will continue to work with you to provide the children of Bridgeport with the educational opportunities they deserve.
No need to remind you all of our busy summer agenda. Summer school is well under way and off to a successful start. We are continuing our efforts to work with the City to balance our budget. We are continuing our preparations to open five new high schools, including our new alternative high school at St. Ambrose. We are also working to improve our three comprehensive high schools through the restructuring of our existing academies and introduction of new academies, through the expansion of our Early College and Dual Enrollment programs and through the new Gates-funded block schedule and professional development models which will impact 9th and 10th grades. We are continuing to refine our curriculum and instruction initiatives with the development of our new simplified benchmarking system and the finalization of our SRBI model with the introduction of our new math intervention. In addition, there is still work to do as we prepare for the conversion of Classical Studies and Black Rock into K-8 schools and work with our Tier 2 schools in developing more aggressive school improvement plans. Finally, this summer will be very busy with the introduction of our new technology program. As we speak, Smart Boards are being installed in most classrooms, desk top computers are being made available for every teacher and enough Chrome Books are being distributed in the high schools to provide a laptop for every student. Obviously, there are significant challenges to ensure that we provide the proper training so that this technology is used effectively.
Clearly this is not an exclusive listing of the work that needs to be done in preparation for the opening of schools next year and we can’t let anything slow us down or divert our attention from the things that need to be done for our school system to become world-class.
As always, I want to thank you for your support and, more importantly, I want to thank you for your commitment to the children of Bridgeport.
Meanwhile, Judge Barbara Bellis released a transcript of her decision. It is eight pages long but boils down to this: “The decision this court was asked to reach was whether he was qualified — under the statute in Connecticut. It was that simple.”
Here is a link to the transcript: