South Fork High School Teacher Resigns and Sends Letter to the Editor
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An open letter from James Seymour, former Media Productions teacher at South Fork High School to the community:
It is with a heavy heart that I formally submit my letter of resignation to Southern Humboldt Unified School District. Although my time was brief, I feel many of the relationships with students, parents, and colleagues will last well beyond my tenure in the district. The community embraced me as one of their own and gave me the opportunity to help these wonderful young people grow as students and citizens. Students and parents have supported me in times of triumph and times of failure. I pride myself on being honest and open with the students I work with and you all have shown me a tremendous amount of support, even after the rare occasion when I insert my foot in my mouth.
The Southern Humboldt community raises creative, independent, and brilliant future leaders. I am blessed to have worked with some of the brightest students in the county and have no doubt they will earn high honors at their respective Universities. I am amazed by the resilience and drive evident within this community of learners, considering the high turnover rate of teachers and administrators at the secondary level. The recent graduating class adapted to the style and philosophy of three different principals from 2014-2017. Reluctantly, they have said goodbye to some of their favorite teachers. The district would be smart to conduct exit interviews with their employees to discover the reasons for their departure and attempt to rectify major areas of concern.
For myself, the decision to leave was not taken lightly. My intention was to remain in the district for years to come, despite the lengthy commute each day. Ultimately, my vocal opposition to educational decisions made by some individuals has led me to look for new opportunities. I move on knowing that every decision I made while in SoHum was done with one question in mind: is this in the best interest of the students. After 12 years of experience in education, I still have much to learn. The only way to improve as a professional is to identify weaknesses and turn them into strengths. I hope the adults that come into contact with your children do the same.
Kids, I will miss you all. I look forward to running into you soon and am excited to see what your future holds. I’m sure you will hear me coming, which will provide enough time for you to hide or prepare for the ultimate prank on an unsuspecting Mr. Seymour. I have enjoyed sharing my classroom, advice, humor, tears, lunch and even my home and family with many of you. Thank you for the beautiful memories and for being part of my life over the past few years. I love and thank you all.
With Warm Regards,