Search for new principals at San Diego Unified - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

Search for new principals at San Diego Unified

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) – The search for principals at 13 San Diego Unified School District is underway for the 2014/2015 school year. One former principal tells CBS News 8 she was surprised to lose her post and be moved to a teaching position.

Former Loma Portal Principal Glenda Gerde says she wasn't expecting the district’s sudden decision to be removed from a school where she’d been a principal for seven years.

“I don't know what the future holds for me. I would have loved to have stayed at the school to be the leader,” said Gerde.

She says the district has moved her to a teaching position in the classroom. However, she says she is exploring other opportunities. Principal jobs are not protected like teacher unions.

“I had no idea that was going to happen. I’ve been planning with the parents and the teachers for a wonderful centennial next year for the 100th anniversary at Loma Portal,” said Gerde.

She says on June 24 she was called into the district office about being removed from the post.

“I was given the comment that the school was going to be moved into a different direction,” said Gerde.

She believes her school is at the forefront and has high testing scores.

Youtube video shows the 37-year educator, Gerde, in a confrontation with a skateboarder on campus. She claims the district cleared her of wrongdoing in that June 2013 incident.

“Obviously I regret that,” said Gerde.

Parents against Gerde refused to go on camera with CBS News 8 but on the phone say Gerde is a bully and creates an intimidating atmosphere.

The district wouldn’t elaborate on why she was removed as principal.

“I can’t talk about anything related to personnel issues or any of the reasons behind it. I can tell you Glenda is still an employee with the district,” said SDUSD Linda Zintz.

Gerde is one of the 13 vacant-principal positions within SDUSD for the 2014-2015 school year.

Spokesperson Linda Zintz says three are from retirement and the remaining are personal decisions or re-assignments.

“It's certainly not unusual,” said Zintz.

Last year, it was Superintendent Cindy Marten first year and filled 45 principal positions. This year she is doing something new by scheduling principal selection community meetings with parents, staff and students at the sites with all vacant positions.

“We know that the principal holds a very important role. We want to make sure everyone has a voice at the table and has input into who is going to be chosen as the next leader of the school,” says Zintz.

Gerde says she knows she won’t be going back to her old school as principal but wanted to speak to CBS News 8 to encourage people to attend the community meetings for the principal search.

“We have tremendous community and I am tired of the negative publicity. My next step is to see what happens next,” says Gerde.

The community meeting for the principal search at Loma Portal Elementary is scheduled for Tuesday at the school at 5 p.m.

A public records request filed with the district did not show any complaints filed against Gerde. CBS News 8 is waiting to learn if there are recent complaints filed against the school.

The principal search will include input from parents, teachers and students on what they want in their next school leader.

Area superintendents will share the information with a search committee and name one by the start of the school year.

If a current principal is moved to the vacant positions that position will also be posted and community meeting will be scheduled.

Meetings at 10 sites are scheduled over the next two weeks. For a list click here.

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