Claremont Preparatory School is in search of a new headmaster.
Administrators from the exclusive and very expensive for-profit school e-mailed parents on Wednesday, June 9, to let them know that headmaster Irwin Shlachter “is no longer with us.” In addition, the message, which was also posted on the school’s official website, announced that Kenneth Wrye, formerly of the United Nations International School, will step in as interim headmaster while Claremont hunts for a permanent new leader.
According to The New York Times, Wrye is Claremont’s third headmaster since the school was founded in 2005. And faculty turnover is not the school’s only problem. Claremont has already endured complaints from parents of lackluster education and poor communication, not to mention a very ugly lawsuit filed by the school’s former psychologist.
That’s a lot of baggage for one of New York City’s few for-profit schools — with an annual price tag of $33,000, Claremont costs almost as much as private college — to carry.
And this latest news isn’t helping. Parents are miffed that, although Shlachter parted way with the school weeks ago, they weren’t notified of his departure until after June 1 — the deadline for getting a refund on next school year’s not-so-paltry $33K tuition.
Michael C. Koffler, Executive Director of Claremont and Chief Executive of MetSchools, which runs Claremont Prep and nine other area schools, insists parents shouldn’t be worried. He attributes the turnover in leadership to “growing pains” and says that replacing Shlachter was a strategic move to take Claremont in a “new direction.”