Durham Parents, Students Meet New Hillside Principal
Posted July 29, 2002 10:22 a.m. EDT
DURHAM, N.C. — The new leader of a Durham high school that has been the center of controversy met with parents and students Sunday.
Eunice Sanders is the third principal at Hillside High School in just over a year.
Sanders replaces Henry Pankey, who after one year on the job, resigned to take a new post in New York. Pankey replaced longtime principal Richard Hicks, who was removed by the school board for passing students who should have failed for missing too many classes.
Sanders said the transition has been difficult, but she is focusing on the future.
"If we start on a positive note we will end on a positive note. This is very important to me and especially for the students," she said.
Superintendent Ann Denlinger recently sent letters to 24 support staffers informing them that they will have to reapply for their jobs. Denlinger said the staff changes will improve academic performance.
The controversy at Hillside prompted demands by parents for the superintendent to step down. Parents also held protests outside of Northgate Mall. They called for a boycott of the mall where many of Hillside's students shop.
Sanders said most Hillside teachers kept their jobs, despite a reorganization at the school.