We, the Supporters of Academic Integrity, are proud of the outstanding teachers in the Plymouth-Canton school district. We wanted to use Teacher Appreciation Week as an opportunity to recognize and thank you for your hard work and dedication to academic excellence and integrity in our public schools.
Your commitment to our community and our students is sincerely appreciated — especially given the increasing demands and current frustrations in public education.
SOAI is a new group, but we’re committed to supporting the high-quality curriculum and educators in the district. The group was founded as a unified oppositional force when an individual convinced the superintendent to remove literature from our high schools. More than 200 community members stood with us – writing letters, speaking at board meetings and contacting the media. Thankfully, justice and common sense prevailed and both challenged books were reinstated to the curriculum.
However, throughout our first campaign supporting academic freedom and integrity, we saw an alarming pattern: decisions were made with no respect for the professional educators in our district.
Our mission has expanded to address this frightening trend — we are actively working to support academic excellence by supporting our teachers. To do so, we are working to make it clear to PCCS administrators that we must tap into the incredible knowledge and experience our teachers bring to the table. We are concerned that teachers are not being consulted when important decisions are made. We are frustrated by a lack of transparency and communication of these decisions. Further, we understand that supporting teachers includes providing frequent, high-quality professional development. The district has the good fortune to claim a faculty infused with new people — energetic young teachers whose training includes state-of-the-art content and methodology of the teaching profession. We must provide professional development programs to foster collaboration between PCCS’ experienced veterans and the new teachers chosen from scores of applicants because of their unique backgrounds. The district must recognize that our PCCS teachers offer an incredible diversity of knowledge and experience — and then actually invite them to the table to share that expertise.
We know that excluding our crucial, most important resource — our highly-educated, trained, and professional teachers — is the wrong direction for this district.
We are concerned about a number of issues in the district, including:
· Elementary ELA curriculum
· World Languages program
· Library Media Specialist responsibilities
· Transparency and communication from the Board and administration
· Educational equity
· Technology curriculum integration and equipment replacement planning
· Top-down decision making
We invite you to visit our website: SupportAcademicIntegrity.com. Please take a look at our mission and beliefs. But most importantly, please know that we are here to help you. Please use our suggestion box – this is an anonymous (or, if you prefer, not anonymous) way to let us know of any issues in the district you would like us to investigate or address. The Supporters would like you to feel welcome to contact any of our members whom you may know personally for more information as well. We also welcome your responses to this email address, which is monitored by our leadership team.
We support you, our teachers, and want to identify our group as an ally and resource for PCCS teachers, administrators, parents, and other community stakeholders.
We rely on the input of current teacher members and look forward to more teachers joining us in our work.
In the future, we will hold discussion forums where we will explain our group, our goals, and our current activities. But most importantly, we want to hear from teachers. We want to hear your concerns and ideas regarding the district.
SOAI is a strong group with a long-term focus. We’ve been there in defense of our schools and we’ve literally gotten the t-shirt – but we’re far from done.
Thank you for your attention — and thank you for your dedication to our students.
The Supporters of Academic Integrity in Plymouth Canton
Our Mission: To promote educational excellence and integrity in Plymouth and Canton, the Supporters of Academic integrity is a collaboration of teachers, parents, students, alumni, and community stakeholders who work to support and recognize outstanding educators and curriculum in the district.