Brookline High School Headmaster Deborah Holman announced in an email to parents today that she is actively looking for a new position. Holman was previously the vice principal of Newton North High School before being named to her current position four years ago. At the time of her hiring at Brookline High School, the school district faced a racial discrimination lawsuit from then Dean of Students Adrian Mims, who claimed that he was passed up for the job because he was black. Mims then filed a complaint with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD) after Holman was given the job. Mims reportedly settled out of court for $80,000. As reported in The Sagamore, Mims resigned from Brookline High School in 2013, and was under good terms with Holman.
Recently, Brookline High School has been dealing with racism concerns. During Holman’s tenure, the school created many initiatives to address them, including Race Reel, the African-American and Latino Scholars Program, The Calculus Project, The Literacy Project, an English department teach-in addressing the Ferguson, NYC and Cleveland shootings, a full faculty meeting examining how public high schools address important and disturbing national events, and the annual ‘Asking for Courage Day’.
Below is Holman’s letter:
Dear Brookline High Community:
As I hope you know, I love Brookline High School and have been honored to serve as Headmaster for the last three and a half years. Yet, I have reached a point in my career where it makes sense for me to think about next steps. As a result, I have decided to pursue a limited number of positions this winter, and I will soon be named a finalist for the Marblehead High School principalship. At this point, my name will be made public even though the interview process is still in progress. I will inform you immediately if I am going to accept another position. In any case, a new position would begin on July 1st. Please know that my heart is struggling with all of this, even if my head is telling me that this exploration makes sense professionally. I am so grateful for my experience in Brookline, and if I do not move to another position I will enthusiastically continue as your Headmaster. Thank you very much for your support.
Deborah Holman BHS Headmaster
-Talia Whyte, Editorial Director