Robert Mitchell wants to remain an employee of the Wayne Public School District.
Mitchell testified to the Board of Education and other district officials on why his contract with the district should be renewed at a special closed-door meeting Monday night.
Mitchell, the principal of Schuyler-Colfax Middle School, met with the Board of Education and Superintendent Ray Gonzalez during a Donaldson hearing.
Untenured school district employees whose contracts are not renewed may request a Donaldson Hearing to testify why they believe the board should keep them on staff despite a decision to the contrary.
Officials have three days to respond to Mitchell’s testimony.
A group of residents waited outside the board conference room to speak to Mitchell after the meeting.
Mitchell declined comment. David Montroni, a field services consultant with the New Jersey Principals of Supervisors Association who attended the meeting with Mitchell, also declined to comment.
Mitchell was of Schuyler-Colfax in December 2010. He was vice principal of the school for 12 years. He has 31 years of experience in education; he has worked as a teacher, high school sports coach, guidance counselor, and a substance awareness coordinator. He has a master’s degree from Jersey City State College in counseling and administration and a bachelor’s degree in physical education from William Paterson College.
An online petition to the board to renew Mitchell’s contract had nearly 300 signatures as of Monday night.
District employees were critical of the board’s decision not to bring Mitchell back.
Pamela Tilli a mathematics teacher at Schuyler-Colfax, said at a previous board meeting that the board should reverse its decision.
“Morale at the school has never been higher,” Tilli said.
“Kids are happy, teachers are happy,” said resident Rex Mitake. “The man has brought the school together.”
The board of George Washington Middle School and May 17. The hirings were part of a series of moves to reorganize the district’s administrative structure in multiple schools and departments.