Decatur School Board: Statement on fired media clerk contained ‘inaccuracies’

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt March 3, 2016
The Decatur School Board meets in an emergency executive session on Feb. 28 to discuss the termination of media clerk Susan Riley. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt

The Decatur School Board meets in an emergency executive session on Feb. 28 to discuss the termination of media clerk Susan Riley. Photo by Dan Whisenhunt

The Decatur School Board has responded to allegations made by the attorney of a fired media clerk, who released a statement saying his client had been harassed and fired based on false accusations.

The School Board’s statement, released on the afternoon of March 3, says, “There are a number of material inaccuracies in the press release prepared by Susan Riley’s attorney.

‘”The school system is not going to publicly correct those inaccuracies nor are we going to engage in a public discussion about this matter while under review,” the statement adds.

Riley is a beloved figure at the school. Her termination caused an uproar that inspired a rally on her behalf. After firing Riley last Friday, Superintendent David Dude backtracked and placed her on paid administrative leave pending a review. Those who know Riley say they cannot fathom what she did that would result in her termination.

Late in the evening of March 2, attorney David Hughes released a statement claiming that Riley was fired for four reasons, including misappropriating school equipment, failing to adhere to a new job plan, inappropriately complaining about her coworkers’ alleged mistreatment of her and for discussing a human resources complaint into her allegations. To see the full press release from Hughes, click here.

The School Board urged residents to be patient while the school system completes its investigation of the circumstances that led to Riley’s termination.

“We ask that all stakeholders exercise patience and give Dr. Dude a chance to complete the independent review he has committed to doing, and allow CSD to work with Ms. Riley and her attorney privately regarding this sensitive and confidential matter,” the School Board’s statement says.

Here is the full statement from the Decatur School Board:

There are a number of material inaccuracies in the press release prepared by Susan Riley’s attorney. The school system is not going to publicly correct those inaccuracies nor are we going to engage in a public discussion about this matter while under review.

The school system will honor its promise to suspend the termination of Ms. Riley, to perform an independent, impartial review of the allegations that led to her termination, and to take appropriate action following the conclusion of that review.

We ask that all stakeholders exercise patience and give Dr. Dude a chance to complete the independent review he has committed to doing, and allow CSD to work with Ms. Riley and her attorney privately regarding this sensitive and confidential matter.  In the meantime, Dr.

Dude will work, with full support of the Board, to continue focusing our work on educating students.

City Schools of Decatur Board of Education Annie Caiola, Chair

Garrett Goebel, Vice Chair

Bernadette Seals

Lewis Jones

Tasha White

About Dan Whisenhunt

Dan Whisenhunt is editor and publisher of Decaturish.com. https://www.linkedin.com/in/danwhisenhunt

View all posts by Dan Whisenhunt

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