Demotion of Principal
By Susan Doherty
June 08, 2006
I feel compelled to send a copy of the e-mail I sent to the President
of the School Board on Monday about the demotion of Larry Eklund.
As of 10 pm on Wednesday I have received absolutely no response
from him. I believe it is important for the community to know
all the facts in this matter and to understand that all reasonable
avenues for communication were ignored by the people in power
that we as citizens elected to represent us, expecting that they
would conduct themselves in professional and honorable ways.
I encourage everyone to become informed in the facts surrounding
the issues in this case and not rely on the opinion of your oil
man, or the lady that sells the washers, dryers, and stoves at
the local outlet. Show up at the School Board meeting on the
14th, or watch it on the t.v., or have someone tape it for you,
so you can form your own opinion as to whether the actions taken
against the Principal of the High School are warranted. I use
his first name in the e-mail, if you are not familiar with the
name, it is Russell Thomas, owner of The Cedars Lodge, Silverking
Lodge, and Clover Pass Resort. I hope he shows more respect and
consideration for his clients and staff than he has shown me.
Ketchikan, AK - USA
I really hope calmer heads will prevail, and, as President of
the School Board, you will put a thaw to the snow ball that is
rapidly growing. I have not always agreed with you or your decisions
regarding school matters, however, I did believe that you went
into each decision with an open mind, looked at the information,
and the options available, and made your decision based on what
was fiscally responsible, ethically correct, or best for kids,
depending on the situation and issue. For those reasons, even
though I think some of our fundamental educational beliefs differ,
I did vote for you, and was an advocate for you becoming the
President of the Board. You are not afraid to make a tough, or
even unpopular decision, when there are no reasonable or rational
I have taken a couple of days to "cool" because I was
immediately outraged and infuriated by the news I had heard.
By now I am getting calls left and right as word spreads, from
all factions of citizens who are absolutely outraged. If Mr.
Erdrick was reassigned and that was it, the Board would have
taken some heat, but I don't think enough people had the negative
energy or time to make a big fight and issue out of it. Now that
his re-assignment (at a very handsome salary I must say) and
Larry's demotion come in practically the same breathe, you have
attracted the attention of those who generally have way too many
constructive things to do with their time than get involved in
Please tell me, as the President of the School Board, that you
will intervene in this latest string of bad decisions and actions
that have occurred since Mr. Martin has taken the reins as Superintendent.
Larry has been the best administrator that this district has
seen in a long time, he has one more year, so what is the point?
Even if you dont like him, what other credible principal would
find themselves unemployeed at this late date in the annual process?
A line has been crossed with this latest decision, just like
the events that triggered the recall. From the reaction I am
hearing, you have hit a nerve that goes much deeper than that
of the recall. It also spans a wider citizen base, that is not
just parents, but consists of current students, past students,
past parents, and an entire church congregation.
I don't want to waste your time or mine, but can tell you right
now that besides being outraged at this decision, if it stands,
I will be equally outraged to be spending my precious time fighting
it, as will the hoards of other people who usually don't quibble
about the small stuff. This isn't small stuff. This is about
justice, this is about what is morally right, this is about standing
by a neighbor and a friend in their hour of need. My God, I can
not believe any of you think this is the right thing to do. A
line has been crossed in many, many, peoples' opinion. Are we
going to have a blood bath over this? We have had enough turmoil,
no one wants this fight, but it will happen, and just like the
other, it will be ugly. Please show some leadership and put a
stop to this now before the snowball grows exponentially, and
along the way damages the very fiber that makes us proud to be
part of this community, Please...
About: "Resident of Ketchikan for 26 years. Have been involved
in numerous volunteer activities in the schools, to the point
that people thought I was a district employee. Have sat on the
report card review committee, the arts review committee, the
committee that made recommendations for policy for kindergarden
placement, and too many other school related committees to mention.
I have devoted years of volunteer time to non profits like Special
Olympics, The Arts Council, and almost every sport organization."
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