4 Nikiski staff members put on administrative leave

  • By Kelly Sullivan
  • Monday, January 5, 2015 11:19pm
  • News

Two administrators and two teachers have been placed on paid administrative leave from Nikiski Middle-High School following allegations from a group of parents of inappropriate behavior.

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District’s Interim Superintendent Sean Dusek opened an investigation into faculty members, whom the district has declined to name citing personnel reasons, after receiving complaints about a school-wide assembly that was held right before winter break, said school district spokeswoman Pegge Erkeneff.

The investigation is being conducted through the school district’s Human Resources Department, Erkeneff said. The issue will be resolved internally, and will include an interview process with those involved and anyone wishing to contribute information, she said.

The district’s investigation began on Dec. 19. The teachers and administrators were placed on leave Monday, Erkeneff said.

No alerts were sent out to the families with students at the school prior to the final day of winter break, which follows standard procedure if a substitute principal is working in the building, Erkeneff said.

Erkeneff said she could not release any further information about the incident as it was an internal personnel issue.

Parent Ben Carpenter first heard about the assembly from his daughter, a student who attends the school for one class period per day. She told her father that she was uncomfortable with some of the material that she had seen during the mandatory assembly, he said.

Carpenter said he began speaking with other parents and staff to verify what his daughter had told him.

A photograph given to the Clarion and purported to have been taken during the assembly, shows the school’s Vice Principal Shane Bostic onstage wearing nothing but an undergarment. Later, male teachers had dressed up as female students and were seen kissing photographs of male teachers, Carpenter said.

Carpenter said he also spoke with Board of Education President Joe Arness about what he had heard.

Carpenter is particularly concerned about administration and staff members portraying sexually suggestive behavior because of recent events involving a former male choir teacher, Jeremy Anderson, who is facing charges of repeatedly raping one of his female students.

Having an assembly, which students were required to attend, potentially indicates a cultural problem that the district did not investigate or provide enough training to prevent the incident, Carpenter said.

Carpenter said he hopes school district policies concerning appropriate teacher behavior are enforced.

 

Reach Kelly Sullivan at kelly.sullivan@peninsulclarion.com.

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