More than 100 petition to save Greenwood principal's job

Posted

Over 100 parents, teachers, teaching assistants and PTO members have joined to form a petition trying to save the job of Kenneth Rassler, who has been the principal of Greenwood Elementary School for the last three years and has been in the district for 12 years.

Rassler did not have his contract renewed during a February meeting of the Warwick School Committee, a move the administration said was in preparation for impending consolidation of schools which the district is now squarely in the midst of – as Wickes, Randall Holden and John Brown Francis Elementary Schools are all being closed or re-purposed after this year.

“We're consolidating and closing schools, and within that process we had to reduce by two administrators,” said Superintendent Philip Thornton on Wednesday.

The petition brings together those who are unhappy with the administration’s decision to make Rassler one of those two positions to not be brought back, as they believe he has exemplified what a principal should be.

“The fact that Mr. Rassler’s contract was not renewed is questionable since Greenwood has achieved many goals under his leadership, including the fact that the school’s STAR math scores are the highest in the district,” the petition reads. “Mr. Rassler unfailingly supports our students and parents while providing teachers with honesty, leadership, and support to execute their duties to best benefit our students.”

The petition claims there is nobody that parents should want at the helm of an elementary school in an era where people are on high alert regarding safety within schools, as Rassler is a trained EMT, is well-versed in CPR and other crisis safety techniques and is a Navy veteran of 16 years.

“In the current environment of schools safety issues, there is no better choice for a principal than a man so committed to the safety of all communities,” the petition states. “Kenneth Rassler is a man of exemplary character and integrity. The children, teachers, and parents will only benefit from his knowledge, strength, and leadership.”

Rassler will be replaced by Roy Costa, currently the principal of John Wickes, which as mentioned above is now closed and will not re-open.

“This petition is not meant to defer from Mr. Roy Costa and his leadership skills, but only to express our support for an exemplary man, who should be praised for his leadership, not released,” the petition continues.

Thornton could not comment as to the reason why Rassler was chosen to be one of the principals not renewed, despite being at the head of a school that isn’t part of the consolidation efforts, as it pertains to a personnel decision – which administrators have a policy regarding not commenting on.

On Wednesday, Rassler said he feels as though the writing is on the wall and that he was seeking employment in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. Yet, he acknowledged, anything could happen.

Comments

5 comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment
richardcorrente

This decision doesn't make logical sense. Mr. Rassler has a fantastic reputation and an envious resume'. I'm not saying the decision is wrong, I just don't understand the reason he was let go when the School Committee has retained many others that have far less seniority and qualifications. I wish the School Committee was more transparent on matters such as this one. It would make their decisions less debated. And less disputed.

Happy Summer everyone.

Rick Corrente

The Taxpayers Mayor

Thursday, June 21
Justanidiot

its how youse saves moneys, you gets kids jest outta skul and gibs dem less moneys to provides more services. it is how you gets erected master mayer

Thursday, June 21
richardcorrente

Dear Justanidiot,

If this is "how youse saves moneys", then we need new leadership. Warwick needs to "Cut Taxes - Cut Spending", but never cut the quality of a great principal. I seems like that is exactly what happened here. Maybe now the School Committee can take the money they saved from Mr. Rassler's pink slip, and hire another unnecessary "Asst. Principal of Climate and Culture" or another "Asst. Principal of Teaching and Learning". That will surely "gets kids jest outta skul" rather than educate them in a quality, "Mr. Rassler" fashion.

I invite any member of the School Committee to respond or dispute my comments. I think all readers would like some closure on this decision.

It just seems wrong.

Happy Summer everyone.

Rick Corrente

The Taxpayers Mayor

Friday, June 22
Scal1024

Again, Mr Corrente chooses to play politics with young children and their parents, injecting himself in an issue that no one asked him to, rather than be honest with voters. The man in back to back sentences actually says:

"this decision doesn't make logical sense"

Only to go on a sentence later and say...

"I'm not saying the decision is wrong"

This is political double speak at its finest. Playing to the emotions of young children and their parents pretending you care about them is pathetic. Rick, you don't care about this mans job, or the students and parents he serves. This is probably the reason why the school committee refuses to legitimize you by engaging in your propaganda campaign. Also, they do not engage because you aren't a serious candidate for Mayor. It is unfortunate you continue to engage in a campaign of attacking others, while offering no specific ideas of your own.

This is why you haven't answered basic questions about your own tax delinquency, volunteer pension buyout plan, buy a house get a check plan or lack of ability to name 1 or 2 areas of spending you would cut?

Friday, June 22
richardcorrente

Dear Scal 1024,

You say "Again Mr. Corrente chooses to play politics with young children and their parents" but the opposite is true. I believe in "open government" and have stated on many occasions that the School Committee (SC) if far too secretive. We don't know the facts and figures involved in this decision. That's why I called for the SC to be "more transparent". You can understand that, can't you Scal?

Also, I am not now, nor have I ever been a tax delinquent. You tried to use Rob Cote as a character reference to sell that lie to the readers. Scal; here's an honest piece of advice. The last person...the very last person in the City of Warwick that you should use a testimonial from is Rob Cote. He has lied repeatedly, and admitted to stealing over 40 of my signs. He is a liar and a thief. Try not to hide behind his reputation. It won't help you offset the fake name you hide behind one bit. Why not just come out from hiding and show everyone that you aren't a nine year old. Wouldn't that at least make you more honest?? Scal?? Wouldn't it?

Happy Summer everyone.

Rick Corrente

The Taxpayers Mayor

Wednesday, June 27