The letter, signed by 18 state legislators, expressed dismay over the “ongoing problems” at Townsend Harris High School. The lawmakers wrote that Jahoda, who has led the school since the beginning of the school year, “lacks essential skills” to be principal.
While the DOE begins a 90-day process to search for a permanent leader, the officials suggested Jahoda should not be included in the applicant pool.
“She should not be considered in the C-30 process set to occur shortly,” the lawmakers wrote. “In her several months as interim acting principal, Ms. Jahoda has clearly demonstrated that she is not the right fit for the school.”
The letter listed several grievances with Jahoda, including accusations of delaying senior transcripts from being sent to college, being unwilling to work with the special education department, and not observing teachers in the classroom.
Elected officials also slammed Jahoda for repeatedly denying or delaying meetings with parents, students and the school newspaper.
They added that the process to select Jahoda as the interim principal considered “little input” from the school community. Officials called that a “dangerous precedent,” and said they hope it won’t continue in the current hiring procedure.
“We hope that you will join us in rejecting Ms. Jahoda’s candidacy,” the lawmakers continued. “As you know, principals are important role models in our city and students deserve a leader ready and willing to work with them and advocate for their best interests.”
A DOE spokesman said they are hiring a principal in accordance with the C-30 regulation. Confidentiality rules prohibit the agency from disclosing any individual candidates.
In the meantime, DOE will listen to feedback from the school community while Jahoda remains interim acting principal, he said.