James B. Edwards Elementary parents fired up about principal reassignment

James B. Edwards Elementary parents fired up about principal reassignment
May 07 14:21 2017 Print This Article

Principal Jake Rambo at James B. Edwards Elementary in Mt. Pleasant is being reassigned to another (undisclosed) job within Charleston County School District at the end of the 2016-2017 school year. Rambo was hired less than two years ago and is an alumnus of the school. He is one of 13 principals in the district who are being reassigned. The district has yet to comment on reasons for the reassignments.

Supporters of Principal Rambo are circulating a petition on the site: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/758/667/527/let-ccsd-hear-our-voice-keep-jake-rambo-as-james-b.-edwards-elementary-principal./ The wording on the petition is as follows: “Let CCSD hear our voice! Keep Jake Rambo as James B. Edwards Elementary principal. We were informed that our principal Mr. Jake Rambo would be relieved of his duties at James B. Edwards Elementary for the 2017-2018 school year and sent to another school. We concerned parents, family members, and citizens, would like some say is this – Mr. Rambo is an amazing leader and communicator, and he above all else promotes a positive school culture where our children feel safe and loved. We would like for the Charleston County Board of Education to reverse this decision and keep Mr. Rambo as our principal.”

One concerned parent, Abbey Robertson, who has two children attending James B. Edwards, is very upset about the reassignment. She wonders if Principal Rambo was given the resources and proper training to “excel” under CCSD guidelines to be “successful.” In her mind, success for CCSD focuses exclusively on test scores. She wonders if the slight dip in the January MAP (Measures of Academic Performance test) scores was part of the reason Rambo is slated for reassignment. This test was given the week after students returned from Christmas break, and Robertson does not feel this is a fair assessment of Rambo’s performance. Robertson also states, “Our kids are more than test scores.” She feels Principal Rambo is concerned about educating the whole child not just preparing them for a standardized test. She says, “He knows each child by name and their parents as well.” When viewing the online comments for the petition (more than 1100 signatures to date), there are many parents making similar comments.

The Charleston County School District released a statement indicating that the school board unanimously approved the Superintendent Gerrita Postlewait’s recommendation for school administrators (principals and assistant principals) contract renewals or reassignments.  A school board member told Lowcountry Source that the board was not given detailed information on the reasons for the 13 principals recommended for reassignment. The school board also did not have time to get feedback from teachers, parents and community members.