Big Bear Valley, CA, April 21, 2010, 5:00pm – At the April 20th Bear Valley Unified School District’s Board of Trustees regular meeting, it was standing room only and beyond as teachers, parents and students arrived to address the board in regards to the demotion of Big Bear Middle School Principal, Julie Chamberlin. As close to 100 members of the community filed into the small meeting room at the District Office, Kegham Tashjian, the Interim Superintendent, had to request that half the room wait outside due to fire codes but assured the public that everyone who wished to address the board would have the opportunity. A total of 22 parents, students and teachers spoke out on behalf of Mrs. Chamberlin, who was notified in early March that she would be relieved of her responsibilities as Middle School Principal and would be returning to the classroom as of the start of the 2011-2012 school year. As this is a personnel issue, the reason for her demotion has not been made public nor has Mrs. Charmberlin herself been given a reason why. Although the total time allocated for public comment on any one item cannot exceed 20 minutes, the board unanimously approved to allow extra time for anyone who wished to speak on Mrs. Chamberlin’s behalf. All of the speakers praised Mrs. Chamberlin’s accomplishments as Middle School Principal and many requested the board to re-consider re-instating her as Principal for the upcoming school year.
Additionally at Wednesday night’s meeting, Melinda Peterson, Principal of Baldwin Lane Elementary School, presented on the school’s 6th grade camp out trip to the High Trails Outdoor Science Camp where students learned about astronomy, dance, archery and more. Several students discussed what they learned at science camp with the number one lesson being teamwork. And, lastly, a presentation was given to the board by Tim Larson, Director of Curriculum for the school district, in regards to on-line learning that would expand the range of courses available to students, as well as scheduling flexibility and opportunities for students who require or request studies outside the classroom. Mr. Larson hopes to have a curriculum adoption of on-line learning at the May 4th board meeting for implementation in the upcoming school year. At the end of the meeting, the board returned to closed session.