To the Editor:

In my 41 years in education, 28 of those years as a Ridgefield High School administrator, I have witnessed some questionable tactics used by central office administrators and Board of Education members. However, I must admit that never have I seen such low-level and uncalled for actions as took place regarding the recent fiasco in the Scotland Elementary School principal search.

Upon my retirement from the Ridgefield Public Schools, I was a volunteer for 15 years at Mr. Santarsiero's Morris Street School in Danbury. He took a low-income, multi-ethnic school and brought it to recognition as a National School of Excellence. His educational competencies are impeccable and not to be questioned. He came to Scotland Elementary School after a problematic time and in a few short months turned it around to the point where teachers, staff, parents and students once again felt proud and joyful to be associated with the school.

And what were the results of his efforts? Not only was he not chosen to permanently lead the school, but he was summarily dismissed as interim principal.

Have the central office administrators no shame regarding this sham of a predetermined principal search? Has the Board of Education no conscience in permitting and accepting this outrageous process to play out?

The new superintendent's intention is to bring integrity and transparency to a wonderful school system that seems to have lost its way. I hope he succeeds.

Joseph Ellis, Ed.D.


RHS Principal, 1990-2003