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Plainville principal out, official details scarce

5/1/2012

By DAWNE LEIKER

dleiker@dailynews.net

PLAINVILLE -- A month of turmoil in the Plainville USD 270 School District took another turn Tuesday morning when Troy Keiswetter, high school principal cut short his school year.

"He had already resigned, but he has dropped off his keys," said Superintendent Beth Reust of Keiswetter's departure. "It was of mutual consent, I think, on both sides."

Keiswetter's exit comes on the heels of Monday night's USD 270 Board of Education special meeting.

As the meeting was called to order, Darlene Jones, board chairwoman, advised the more than 30 residents gathered in the board meeting room that during the special meeting there would be no public comments or interaction between the public and the board.

The meeting's agenda consisted of an executive session called to discuss personnel issues. Before the motion to go into executive session, Jones made a statement.

"To make it perfectly clear to all in attendance, I will not be participating in any executive sessions, discussions or decisions in relation to allegations made by the high school principal," she said. "I have lived in the community all my life and have served on this board for 33 years and continue to be dedicated to the students in this community."

"Any allegations that are circulating are not accurate."

After 50 minutes of executive session, Jones pounded her gavel, adjourning the meeting without any board discussion.

Details of an incident alleged to have occurred April 20 at Plainville High School have yet to be made public by law enforcement.

According to the Plainville Police Department, the case, which is under investigation with no charges having been filed, is in the hands of County Attorney Ed Hageman, who also declined to elaborate on the April 20 incident.

Controversy for the USD 270 board previously surfaced in early April resulting in the board voting 5-2 to offer tenure to football coach Joe Simon. Residents had rallied in support of the coach after Simon said the board had informed him he might not be tenured.

At the April 9 meeting, Reust said because of legislation, school boards are not required to inform teachers whether they are tenured until the third Friday in May. Although board members Jones and Nathan Grebowiec expressed concern that rendering a decision on Simon's tenure set a negative precedent, after an executive session, board members voted to offer him tenure.

Jones and Tom Nuckolls voted against the measure.

"I do not support singling out one teacher to offer a contract, because I do not feel that one teacher holds precedent over the whole faculty," Jones said at the April 9 meeting.