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JeffCo School Board sticks to principal’s reassignment


The Jefferson County School Board, faced with a loud outcry Tuesday night over the removal of Madras High School Principal Sarah Braman-Smith, stuck to its decision to reassign her to serve as principal for the new Warm Springs K-8 Academy.

The decision was confirmed following public and board member comments made at Tuesday night’s school board meeting.

“We have spent a lot of time gathering input and learning from staff and community members, including the public comments at tonight’s board meeting,” said school board member Tom Norton, Jr.

“With these considerations, district leadership has decided to move forward with the initial decision to utilize Sarah’s skills and expertise where they’re needed most — and that is at Warm Springs K-8.”

According to district Superintendent Rick Molitor, Braman-Smith’s leadership at the K-8 level will help the district move toward its community-driven Strategic Plan.

“It was important for us to hear from more teachers, parents and community members tonight,” said Molitor. “Now it’s time to move forward, and we’re hoping they will stand behind this decision in the interest of serving our learners.

“The work at Madras High School has been transformational, and it’s time to take the next steps, starting with our youngest students, and we believe Sarah can help us do that.”

However, as was evident Tuesday night, that doesn’t mean the community will accept it.

“It’s time for them to start acting with integrity and start answering to people who elected them to public office,” said Carrie McPeak, Madras Education Association president.

A rally and march in support of Braman-Smith was followed by testimony to the school board by people like Madras High junior Ingrid Sanchez.

“Principal Braman-Smith has not only risen to the occasion of improving the school dramatically, but she has also influenced our lives in countless less tangible ways,” Sanchez said.

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