Silver Hill Chair Resigns Following Rejection of Charter, Innovation Concept

Euthemia Gilman (Northern Essex Community College photograph.)

A few days after teachers voted not to support continuation of the Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School, the school’s founder and current chairman is resigning.

Euthemia Gilman, who was the force behind launching the Horace Mann charter 11 years ago as the new principal, announced her resignation Tuesday night.

“My purpose for my return in September was to participate in either obtaining the second Charter Renewal or converting to an Innovative School,” Gilman said. She explained the 246 to 114 vote of the Haverhill Education Association Thursday killed the charter renewal, and Silver Hill teachers voted last week to “not seek a conversion to Innovation.”

Gilman pointed to the successes of the school. “…Staff brought the school out of a restructuring status with looming imminent state take-over within 3 years to a Level 1 school. However, more importantly was the establishment of an educational community that young children could thrive in safely for six years beginning in the free (all-day kindergarten) program.” She added, “Teachers participated in professional development that was linked to the diagnostic testing to improve their teaching skills and talents. Teachers researched programs and systems that help nurture positive social and emotional attitudes in its students.”

In early May, Gilman appeared resigned to the charter school ending, but spoke of the advantages of converting to an innovation academy.

“Of the three options—the three doors, door one, door two or door three—I would take door two. I would take innovative academy,” she told WHAV.

Innovation Schools are a bit of a hybrid between district-owned charter schools and standard public schools. The union loses some of its power, but such schools retain the right to supplement finances with grants and its own nonprofit foundation money. She saw many advantages. “You become a flagship elementary school. I would say that does more good, especially for the quadrant and for the district, as opposed to stirring up and getting people upset.”

Gilman resigns, effective Wednesday. “The journey for Silver Hill will continue as the future unfolds. The strength of this school is you and only you will continue to write Silver Hill’s future,” she wrote.

6 thoughts on “Silver Hill Chair Resigns Following Rejection of Charter, Innovation Concept

  1. Ms. Gilman … congratulations! For 11 years you were a fantastic role model for everyone associated with Silver Hill. Through your hard work, innovation, and leadership the students at SH witnessed what success looks like up close. Hold your head high Ms. Gilman, because literally everyone who followed this story knows the truth. And when you speak with teachers who don’t make eye contact with you, you too will know the truth about them.

  2. Another example of Massachusetts leftist, selfish, government control foolishness. This school was rising from the ashes and now has been voted to get burned again.

    Was this vote result about helping the children? Absolutely not.

    This was a result of union based dolts and hangers on – worried about their own rear-ends and sense of entitlement – they couldn’t care less about kids.

    What a damn shame.

  3. Eleven years ago a group of smart, committed teachers upset the teachers union’s status quo by creating an innovative model for educating children where other approaches had failed repeatedly. The vote to withdraw support of the Silver Hill School is a lesson in resentment and envy.

  4. Thank you for all you have done. You fought the good fight and because of that, exposed the Teachers union for what they are…self serving and way behind the times in their thinking. Please go onto your next challenge and show these people how it is done, sadly it will be somewhere else. You showed us it can be done here and some of us appreciate it. Best wishes to you and your next challenge.