Kim Gerould: Supports Bridge Street School colleagues

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Sunday, February 25, 2018
Support colleagues at Bridge Street School

We write to express our support and solidarity with our colleagues at Bridge Street School in Northampton.

While our circumstances at Jackson Street School are somewhat different from Bridge Street, we too have traveled a bumpy road with the hasty rollout of the new inclusion model. Along with our Bridge Street colleagues, we have always supported inclusion for all our students, but know that it is difficult to implement when there aren’t adequate supports for high-need learners.

Some students will continue to need more support outside of the classroom, a reality supported by our district’s inclusion consultant, Lisa Dieker. We look forward to real collaboration with our district leadership team as we plan for next year.

There have been both positive experiences with this new model, and real challenges. Teachers and educational support professionals have deep expertise and experience, and should be consulted as we move forward to improve the models that are being implemented in our four elementary schools.

Parents also have important perspectives that should be heard. As part of our district’s social/emotional curriculum, we continually teach our students to interact and listen to one another with respect. We hope that all levels of Northampton public school staff, from ESPs and teachers to the superintendent and School Committee, can do the same.

Kim Gerould


The letter also was signed by 21 other teachers and staff at Jackson Street School in Northampton.