Disclaimer: this letter expresses my personal thoughts and opinions. I am not speaking for the Board but as a resident who happens to be a member of the Paterson board of Education.
We have been living in some of the most uncertain of times. Difficulties have almost been insurmountable at times. I want to say that given all we have been through, our superintendent has worked very hard to keep the boat floating, often in unsettling weather. It is easy to criticize. It’s easy to complain. But it takes effort to roll up one's sleeves, jump in and work to make things happen.
It’s safe to say that we are facing some very difficult decisions ahead of us. As such, it is important to have someone at the helm who is ready for the fight and not just to fight, but is also ready to win the battle. Our children’s future is at stake.
I want to thank Ms. Shafer for not shuttering during this most difficult times. She has maintained a decorum that is almost flawless throughout this tumultuous season. Again, it’s easy to criticize. But let’s give her credit for the fact that despite all that we have had to endure, Ms. Shafer, along with her team, has worked tirelessly and continues to work tirelessly to make things better.
She even worked through the weekend to implement changes to the budget that I requested, including returning as many of our teachers back as possible. Of the 247 originally slated for termination, 200 teachers were brought back. I am well aware of the fact that we have a long way to go. But we must be cognizant of the fact that progress is being made.
As a board of education member, I am committed to continue to work with Ms. Shafer and my colleagues to help my district get to where it needs to be.
Corey L. Teague