'A mass exodus.' Parents raise concerns about teacher turnover at Amityville school

The school district's public relations firm said that they have filled 25 teaching positions and currently are only looking to hire for two open positions.

Rachel Yonkunas

Apr 6, 2023, 9:18 PM

Updated 434 days ago

Share:

Dozens of teachers in the Amityville Union Free School District have resigned since the start of the school year. Many parents are worried that this teacher turnover is negatively impacting their children's education.
The school district was the focus of a Team 12 Investigation back in December that uncovered how some high school students were given incomplete grades in classes that did not have certified teachers.
Amanda O'Connor has two daughters in the district and says she pushes them to do their best in school. However, she's concerned with what appears to be a severe shortage of teachers.
"It's very shocking. It's very concerning," said O'Connor. "What is it that's making them leave? That's what we want to know so the district can maneuver whatever they need to do so they can start retaining teachers."
O'Connor is not the only concerned parent. Multiple people in the district have reached out to Team 12 Investigates. Some community members said they have called on state leaders to provide oversight of the district.
"I think it's a mass exodus from the Amityville school district," said Wendy Canestro, of Amityville. "Teachers resigning mid-year is not common practice. Children can't learn if there's no teacher in the classroom and this really rests on the shoulders of the administration and the Board of Education."
Team 12 Investigates a wave of resignations in the district. Documents from school board meetings show there have been at least 34 staff resignations since August.
This number includes the assistant high school principal, school psychologist, guidance counselor, eight teachers, five teaching assistants and 11 permanent substitute teachers.
The district's superintendent, Dr. Edward Fale, is also leaving. The announcement was made public just six months into his 3-year contract. Team 12 Investigates requested an interview with Dr. Fale, but we were told "the district is closed for spring break this week."
Meanwhile, parents like O'Connor, just want answers from the people entrusted with running their children's schools.
"That's all the community is looking for. We just want you to be transparent with us," said O'Connor.
The school district's public relations firm said that they have filled 25 teaching positions and currently are only looking to hire for two open positions.


More from News 12