Northwestern principal's resignation a great loss

August 16, 2011

I was disappointed to read that Jason Hartling, the principal at Northwestern High School, resigned recently after just a few years at the helm ("City school system grapples with turnover of principals," Aug. 11).

I met Mr. Hartling several years ago when I was monitoring the High School Assessment prep after-school program at Northwestern, and I was very impressed by his professionalism and his vision of what was needed to motivate his students to succeed.

During various visits to the school, I was impressed by the faculty's' evident admiration for their leader and the students' respect for him. When he met students in the hallway, there were broad smiles on their faces as they greeted him, calling to mind the old adage "respect begets respect."

Interestingly, my daughter, who teaches at Fallstaff Elementary/Middle School, had the same opinion of this principal. She told me he was often at the corner talking to community folk and making sure his students did not interfere with the dismissal of Fallstaff students.

I don't know why Mr. Hartling resigned, but surely a follow-up to a letter of resignation written in April was called for.

Sue Cutter

The writer is a former area executive officer for the Baltimore City school system.

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