Former North Atlanta High principal Mark MyGrant wants to clear his name against what he considers innuendo and character assassination by APS leadership And he has hired education attorney Glenn Delk to represent him.
According to the AJC:
MyGrant sent a letter Wednesday to Atlanta Public Schools asking the board of education to hold a hearing to clear MyGrant’s name following allegations of “institutional racism” at the school while he was in charge. Attorney Glenn Delk said “what we’re asking is simple: We think he should be given an opportunity to face his accusers and clear his name. If they don’t have evidence, they should issue an apology.” MyGrant was one of six administrators removed from the school Oct. 5
MyGrant is a 27-year APS veteran enticed out of retirement this summer to serve as interim at his former school, North Atlanta High School, while a search for a replacement was conducted. He was scheduled to end his interim stint this week.
He had strong evaluations throughout his career so was surprised when he was unceremoniously ordered out of North Atlanta on Oct. 5. His top administrators were also told to leave the school, their computers confiscated, but they were reassigned and received their computers back a few days later.
And MyGrant says he was even more surprised when his ex boss Davis told nearly a thousand parents, students and community members on Oct. 9 that he had to act quickly and decisively because North Atlanta was a failing school and that dramatic change was needed.
I am still baffled by the manner in which Davis overhauled North Atlanta High. There are a dozen other ways he could have done it and avoided what is turning into a long drama. And the fallout extends beyond the affected employees and the high school community; this public and protracted spat has revived doubts about APS that Davis needs to be putting to rest.
Image and perceptions matter, and Davis has revived the perception of Atlanta as a system marred by fiefdoms and back room brokering. His explanations have failed to satisfy many of the parents of North Atlanta, who believe there is a hidden agenda at play.
And while I have now spoken to Davis twice about it, including a lengthy session at the AJC with other reporters, I don’t get why the school chief felt compelled to act in such a dramatic and urgent fashion. MyGrant only had three weeks left under his interim agreement. Why not wait until then?
Nor do I understand the treatment of the small learning community leaders, all of whom were reassigned and all of whom seem to have been working hard at North Atlanta. Davis contends that they were effective as individuals, but not as a team, which is why he disbursed them throughout the district.
That’s fine. But why show up on a Friday afternoon, tell them to go and confiscate their computers? These folks were not being fired; they were being transferred. I remain puzzled by Davis’ response to me after his North Atlanta High School meeting that taking their computers was simply a precaution against unhappy employees acting rashly or out of anger. Do you transfer people to key positions in your organization if you believe they’re capable of trashing their computers or compromising sensitive data?
Here is a Google doc of the Delk letter and accompanying support data that the attorney made part of the package, including emails and the student performance breakdown done by Midtown forensic accountant Jarod Apperson, which I shared on the blog two weeks ago.
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog