By Arlene K. Nehring
Over one hundred residents rallied behind Cherryland PTA president Laura Rodriguez at the Hayward Unified School District Board of Trustees meeting last night and called on the Trustees to retain Cherryland principal Irene Preciado and Hayward High principal George Bullis.
Both Preciado and Bullis were among eight administrators pink-slipped during a closed-door Trustee meeting on March 7, 2012.
Rodriguez said, “Ms. Preciado has been principal at Cherryland School 14 months. She is the seventh principal in five years. Despite her short tenure, Ms. Preciado has earned the trust of parents, and developed a strategic school plan that is strongly supported by the PTA. She has also forged a strong partnership with our new assistant principal, Matt Clark. We are very upset by the Board’s decisions to let go Preciado and Bullis, particularly because we need stability in the leadership of our schools and our community.”
Commenting on Preciado’s dismissal, Rodriguez said, “If the Trustees have a plan for Cherryland School, we haven’t heard it. After our last principal was removed, the Trustees promised us five years with our next principal. It’s time to stop the revolving door on our principal’s office.”
The Rev. Dr. Arlene K. Nehring, pastor of t, presented the Trustees with a letter signed by thirteen community partners, including , supporting Preciado and Bullis.
She explained that these principals have been crucial partners with public and private entities in addressing root causes of youth violence and improving student and school success in the HUSD.
She cited examples such as a K-2 early intervention language and literacy program developed by Preciado and a school-based health services collaboration under development with Bullis at Hayward High.
“These and other examples,” Nehring said, “illustrate that our principals have a proven capacity to draw scarce financial and in-kind resources to improve our schools. They have vital programs in process that can attract additional resources. Together with Ms. Preciado and Mr. Bullis,” Nehring explained, “we have laid a foundation for continued school improvement. The most effective way for the HUSD Board of Trustees to express its commitment to the success of Cherryland Elementary School and Hayward High School is by retaining our principals.”