This article is based on my opinion and experiences with the principal.
Original Date Written- June 18th, 2012
Some of the information in this article has changed or is no longer relevant due to changes within the school system.
I spent the last four years of my life at East Haven High School and I can honestly say I enjoyed almost all of it. Along with meeting friends and making friendships that will last me the rest of my life, I learned enough to make it to the next level in my education, college. I will tell you from a first-hand experience, there are some excellent, really excellent, educators within EHHS. I am glad I decided to go there for four full years. However, along with the good there is bad. It is sad to say but sometimes the bad outweighs the good.
It appears to me, as well as others, that EHHS has taken a turn for the worst. Not in aspects of academics (Which certainly could be revamped but that is a later discussion) but in the administration that has taken over for the last two years. The past two years have been extremely difficult for me in particular. Not to make this about me, but that is the basis for this blog — to explain my life at EHHS.
I was one of the most involved students at EHHS. I was a class officer, I was in various clubs, on various committees, attended Board of Education and Yellow Jacket Club meetings, attending sporting events, and just volunteered a lot of my time to making EHHS a better place. I thought I was doing something good by being as involved as I was, but I later realized that it was not a good idea.
In the summer of 2010 I found out that our former principal was going to resign. This, to me, was upsetting because the former principal was easy to get along with and always helped me, as well as other students whenever we needed it. After a few weeks, a replacement for the former principal was chosen. Although I was originally very eager to meet our new principal, I soon learned that he was not eager to meet me at all.
As a student who was as involved as I was, I truly believed I was an asset to the school. I could be called ten minutes before a meeting or a sports event and would drop what I was doing to go to the activity. Some people may ask, why would anyone do that? Well, to be simple, it was because I got along with almost all of my classmates and I would do anything I could for them.
The beginning of my junior year, September 2010, I met our new principal for the first time. At this time I was writing articles for the East Haven Patch regarding all kinds of activity within the East Haven School District. I wrote an article regarding half days at the high school and how the new principal changed the schedule directly after he experienced his first half day at EHHS.
Of course it is his write to do so but myself, as well as other students, had wished he gave it a little more time to adapt to it considering we were used to it and did not really want to change. Obviously we became accustomed to it but it was just my opinion and decided to write about it. After I wrote the article I was approached in the high school about my article by the principal. He was not too happy about it and I realized I probably should not have written it. At this point, it was not a big deal to me because it was only one misunderstanding.
The school year went by and I continued to write my articles as well as attend all of my extracurricular activities. I had very minimal dealing with the principal last year as I tried to stay to myself and work hard to achieve my good grades so I could apply to college in the upcoming fall and have many choices of where to go. The only involvement I had with the principal was a committee which I served for Healthy Youth Week which was a week dedicated to all sorts of health events. My role was to coordinate a donation of fruit for the school. This was not easy by any means. I had to do a lot to receive this donation and I also had to personally deliver it by myself in the early morning. This was in May.
In June of last year. I wound up with a job working for the Board of Education doing custodial work. I had to go up to the finance office at the high school to speak with the finance director of the time and was stopped at the door. I was told, by the principal that I was not allowed in the building and I must call the finance director to speak with him. He then spoke with the security guard of the time and I was told I was not allowed in the building and I must leave. My question is, why, as a taxpayer, employee, and most of all, student, why was I not allowed in the high school? This was the first incident that led me to believe I was not very well liked.
I was later told by someone in the building that I must be watched because I am a “politician” and cannot be trusted. I asked who had said this and I was told the administration of the building. This did upset me quite a bit as I was just a student, like everyone else, even though I may be more involved. I guess being that involved is frowned upon at EHHS.
In September I was entering the building for school around 7:00 am. The principal shook my hand and said good morning as he always had. He stopped me to tell me that I was blogging during school hours and how is that possible? My response was that I was not aware that I was blogging during school hours (to my knowledge, I was not). The principal told me that he would find the exact times and get back to me. I said please do. I was never contacted about it again.
Another activity, a pep rally, was held during the fall months and I was helping out. It was during 5th or 6th period and I was out at the field since that is where it was being held. I was in charge of playing the music in the booth (I was one of the only people around who knew how to use the stereo there). The principal asked me why I was outside, who gave me permission, and what was I doing. All valid, very valid questions, but honestly? I am out there trying to help the school have its pep rally and I have to get the third degree? Mind you, there were many other students outside too, some of which were just sitting on the bleachers doing nothing at that time.
The last issue I had was about graduation. I asked him if I would be able to speak at graduation in the form of a letter and was ignored for about two months. Then, I was called into his office and told that I did not “earn that honor” and if he let me speak he would “have to let another 10 people speak”. So what? It was the class of 2012’s graduation…. Not his. As a “happy medium” I was allowed to speak to a grand total of about 40 students in the auditorium before graduation. I spoke around 5:15 which was when students were told to get there therefore not many people were there. Bottom line is that in life we only get one high school graduation and the honor of me speaking to my class at graduation was taken from me. I truly thought I deserved that honor. Now, however, I am over it.
Sorry for the length of this article but I thought it was important that the public knows what I went through in EHHS because it is possible other students may go through the same. Since I have graduated high school I decided all this nonsense was frivolous in the long run. So now I just look back and laugh at some of these issues. I will say, however, the principal did involve students in many activities including some of favorites- Healthy Youth Week and Field Day. For that, I thank him. I had some excellent teachers while in EHHS. I thank every teacher that helped me with anything and everything. I also went to thank the entire guidance staff because without them, a lot wouldn’t be possible. They are always there to help. Lastly, thank you to the Board of Education for their continued support of all students.
Addition- August 9th, 2012
I as well as the system the very best in their endeavors. Thank you for all you have done. Although the principal and I had our issues, I still respect him and appreciate the good that he did for the high school.
(Editor's Note: Link to other online posts added by East Haven Patch.)