Teachers at Keiller Leadership Academy have pulled their petition to cut the school’s partnership with the University of San Diego.

The act marks a shift at the school, which enjoyed a remarkable and rare academic turnaround in its early years but underwent turmoil after the departure of its first director, Patricia Ladd. Staffers who were frustrated with the board actions that preceded Ladd leaving had complained that the university had too much sway on the board. University of San Diego provides academic guidance and resources to Keiller and has several members on its governing board.

Not all staffers agreed with the petition. Parent Involvement and Recruitment Director Eva Contreras was alarmed that the petition caused the university to stop sending teachers-in-training to assist at Keiller.

Several changes led the teachers to reconsider the petition, said Robert Ryles, a teacher and newly appointed board member. Ryles and another teacher, Jonathan Saenz, joined the governing board and board President Maurice Wilson met with teachers to discuss their concerns and explain why the board couldn’t share more information about the circumstances of Ladd’s departure, a personnel matter that was aired in closed session.

“Nobody liked the outcome but there was due process,” Wilson said Monday night. He added, “They wanted to hear detailed facts that we really can’t release.”


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