Commonwealth Journal

Local News

January 18, 2013

Employees file suit against Pulaski schools

Somerset —  

A scandal at a Pulaski County school more than a year ago has returned to haunt the county school district, as three individuals have filed a lawsuit in Pulaski Circuit Court.
Three Pulaski County School System employees are claiming they were treated unfairly and removed from their positions following the demotion hearing of former Pulaski Central Principal Dan Price.
In August of 2011, Pulaski County school officials received a letter from the Kentucky Office of Education Accountability stating that allegations had been made about students at Pulaski Central Alternative School being permitted to take final exams and earn credit for courses they hadn’t taken or that they were failing.
Price sued the school system and sought a hearing with the county Board of Education to try and get his job back after being reassigned to a teacher position at Southwestern High School.
The board voted 3-2 to deny Price in that effort — board members Edwin Sellers and Olivia Minton (the latter of which had previously nominated Price for superintendent) were the two in his favor — but only after hearing from numerous witnesses over the course of several days in early 2012.
Among them were the plaintiffs in this newest lawsuit, Wenda Conley, Michael Napier and Alice Vanhook. The suit claims that these individuals have “suffered and continue to suffer emotional distress, embarrassment and humiliation” because of “”outrageous acts ... committed with malice, oppression ... and wanton disregard of the rights of the plaintiffs for which they are entitled to recover punitive damages” at the hands of the defendants.
The Pulaski County Board of Education, Butcher, and the board members at the time of the Price hearing — Minton, Sellers, Cindy Price, Jim Wilson and Phillip Wilson — are named as defendants in the suit.
The plaintiffs are all listed in the suit as individuals who testified or were subpoenaed in the Price case. Conley and Vanhook were Pulaski Central employees, and Napier had recently moved from London to become assistant principal at Southern Middle, as stated in the suit. 

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