July 14 2015

Letter to the Editor: On NEASC Debate

By: Fran Rosenberg

Dear Editor;


I am a parent of two Burlington High School graduates.  My oldest son just graduated with honors from Tufts University, and my younger son is a junior at UMASS Lowell.  The issue of NEASC accreditation was completely irrelevant to their college searches or to their success, and I am disappointed to see that it has become such a big topic of concern.   The continued focus on this issue is pulling our leadership away from many other issues that are more critical for the future of the Burlington Public Schools.


In addition to being a parent, I am a long time teacher and am currently the Executive Director of Northshore Education Consortium, a special education collaborative serving 20 school districts north of Burlington.  I work closely with the Superintendents of these districts, several of which withdrew from the NEASC process for the same reasons that Burlington did.  The Superintendents, including Dr. Conti, were successful in getting the message across to NEASC that their process needed to change.   Given my perspective of working closely with twenty districts, I feel that we in Burlington are very lucky to have the leadership that we do in our school system.  The Burlington Schools are not perfect, but they are definitely moving in the right direction!  We are fortunate to live in town that has supported stable and progressive leadership and has a school superintendent who is actively involved in the education reform process on a local and regional level. 


I can appreciate that some parents are frustrated about the communication process.  Perhaps this is an area for improvement. However, the amount of energy that is being spent on this issue seems excessive, as there is no evidence that the administration’s decision caused or will cause any harm.  The School Committee and Administration are on record as having committed to improved communication and resuming the NEASC accreditation process.  I hope that parents will allow them to turn back to more critical matters such as their ongoing work around curriculum, instruction, school safety, and professional development for teachers that are so much more important for Burlington’s children.




Fran Rosenberg


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