WASHINGTON – Parents at one D.C. elementary school are demanding to know why the principal was fired just a few months into the school year.
Shepherd Elementary School principal Galeet Ben Zion, PhD, was called in to meet with D.C. schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee on Friday and promptly fired. Ben Zion says she remains baffled by her dismissal.
“It was maybe a two-minute meeting, and I was told that I failed as a leader,” recalled Ben Zion. When asked whether she thought she had failed as a leader, Ben Zion replied, “Not in my opinion.”
Ben Zion said she was hired and fired by Rhee after a little more than three months on the job. Ben Zion’s replacement will be the school’s fifth principal in 12 months.
“If she thought I made a mistake, I would have liked for her to tell me what that mistake was so that we can fix it,” she said.
Many parents at Shepherd Elementary in Northwest are asking ‘why.’ The school listserv is filled reactions, ranging from stunned and appalled to confused and ticked off.
“I feel sick sick about Dr. Ben Zion being fired,” said Carol Mullholland. “There is no other way to describe it. I came very close to pulling my daughter out of the school.”
“The best way to describe the sentiments of the majority of my parents ranges from being pretty upset to just outraged,” said Earl Yates, the PTA president.