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LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Supplying Proof That I'm Telling the Truth

Former Noyes Elementary School teacher Janice Donahue releases documentation backing her side of her dismissal, countering statements from Superintendent Anne Wilson and Sudbury Education Association President Robert Mealey.

There are two events that have prompted me to write this letter to the editor: 

  1. Anne Wilson’s statement Aug. 27 stating “There are a number of misstatements and half-truths in the story.”
  2. Bob Mealey’s letter to my former colleagues appearing Aug 31 stating: “It was apparent to the SEA and the MTA lawyer that the town was steadfast in its decision to remove this teacher from our ranks right from the start.”

I am one person against the large, well-funded machine of those in control of SPS. They have taken my career, my dignity, my reputation and hurt me financially. I refuse to sit by and continue to take their abuse. 

I believe the facts speak for themselves. In the attached documents you will see the following timeline documented: 

  • May 4: an incident occurred in Mr. Gorgone’s classroom
  • May 7: Mr. Gorgone reported it to Annette Doyle
  • May 7-9: Annette Doyle and Kristin Moffat interviewed six students from my classroom without parental notification, even with parents in building
  • May 8: Annette, Kristin , Bob Mealey and I met May 8 where I reported the fight to my supervisor Annette Doyle and Annette put me on administrative leave while she conducted an investigation
  • May 9: Dr. Wilson emailed and mailed me a letter of Intent to Dismiss 
  • May 13: Email correspondence with Bob Mealey, my Union Representative
  • May 16: Email directive for lesson plans from Annette Doyle and my fulfillment of demand as seen by Bob Mealey’s response. 
  • May 22: Dr. Wilson filed 51A Report with DCF
  • May 25: DCF screened out report and mailed Dr. Wilson the Mandated Reporter Notification Letter
  • June 5: Meeting was held by Dr. Wilson and Annette Doyle with parents of Room 15 with Bob Mealey in attendance as my union representative.  During that meeting when asked about lesson plans, Annette said she requested them from me but never received them. This is clearly contradicted by Dr. Mealey’s email to me May 17.
  • June 20: Anne Wilson’s statement at SPSC meeting that “no teacher has been or will be disciplined for breaking up a fight. And to clarify, again, there was no fight between students and no report of a fight between students was made to the administration. (Please see my report to Annette Doyle, principal, during “Investigation of Allegations” May 8)
  • July 9: Resignation submitted. 

I cannot speak of the investigation that Annette and Dr. Wilson conducted.  I can only say that Annette met with me as documented May 8, and at no time after did anyone from the SPS or any person contact me regarding the events of May 4. 

According to her own letter to me May 9, Dr. Wilson stated it was my right to meet with her to review her decision. We would have met May 14, but my MTA lawyer was not appointed until after the letter was sent and he was unavailable that date so it was rescheduled for May 23. 

As I stated previously, Dr. Wilson never attended that meeting nor any other with me to review her decision, only the counsel hired on behalf of Dr. Wilson.   

I was terribly saddened to read the statement made by Bob Mealey on the Patch Friday. It is my hope that if any allegation or investigation were to be made in the future regarding any of my former colleagues, that they will be granted greater support.  

Sincerely

Janice L. Donahue


Concerned Sudbury Parent September 05, 2012 at 10:49 AM
I feel compelled to comment on the email from Robert Mealey to Janice Donahue of May 13th. In his email, Mr. Mealey responds to Ms. Donahue's admittedly short request for notes, etc. Ms. Donahue can certainly be forgiven for her lack of pleasantries in an email to her union president considering she had just received notice of her possible dismissal, putting at risk her reputation and retirement benefits from a 30-year teaching career. Instead, Mr. Mealey scolds Ms. Donahue like an impudent child. "If you want me to work on your behalf I expect please and thank you. I am not someone's lacky (sic)." I am far from being a big teacher's union supporter, but if there ever was a case for a teacher to receive fair representation from her union, this was it. Instead, Mr. Mealey betrays his contempt for Ms. Donahue in this newly published email. I hope Sudbury teachers take note of Mr. Mealey's treatment of Ms. Donahue, in addition to his obvious incompetence in representing her. Sudbury teachers deserve better. It is becoming clear how isolated Ms. Donahue must have felt through this whole ordeal. I hope Sudbury parents continue to support her until her reputation and benefits are fully restored.
Christine September 05, 2012 at 12:40 PM
UNREAL
Rob F September 05, 2012 at 01:07 PM
To "Seeking Transparency": Well said! Will you be attending tonight's school committee meeting? If so, would you consider addressing the committee and asking them that same question?
Christine September 06, 2012 at 09:00 PM
"belies" his contempt
no name, i'd be fired September 10, 2012 at 09:01 PM
This may be the first logical, non-emotionally driven comment I have seen on this topic. Thank you.

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