Teachers, administrators meet to address workplace concerns

Michael McLaughlin
The Aspen Times

At the end of July, representatives from Aspen High School’s teacher association, high school Principal Kim Martin, Assistant Principal Mark Grice, Superintendent John Maloy and Assistant Superintendent Julia Roark met with a third-party facilitator to address concerns and frustrations expressed by the two parties at the end of the 2013-14 school year.

Two issues were identified as needing attention in the upcoming school year — increasing communication and following school and district policies and protocols.

“Solutions to address these concerns were discussed and agreed upon,” Maloy said.

He said the goal of the high school staff and administration is to support a positive work environment and enhance the school’s sense of community. That includes building, and sometimes rebuilding, relationships that will foster more collaboration, cooperation, and communication.

To achieve those solutions, Maloy said the staff and administration would take a more collaborative approach to staff meetings. The school leadership team, a group of teachers put together by the principal and vice principal, also will have a more active role in leading the school rather than just being a conduit of information.

He also said that each school building has a pair of teacher-association representatives who speak on behalf of the teachers in that building. He wants to see those representatives meet with the building administrators, usually the principal or vice principal, at least once or twice a month.

“It really comes down to communicating more effectively,” Maloy said. “It’s the intention of the high school staff and administration that Aspen High School continues to be an exemplary high school that maximizes the potential of all students in an open and collaborative learning environment.”

When asked about the status of Martin, who was given a vote of “no confidence” in June by the teacher association, Maloy said she was gearing up for the start of school on Aug. 25.

“She signed her new contract in June and has been at her desk this summer, working hard,” Maloy said. “I would say she’s ready to go for the upcoming school year.”


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