SANDOWN – Plaistow Police have been asked to investigate a situation that occurred at the School Administrative Unit (SAU) 55 offices Thursday, July 24, between Timberlane Regional school board member Donna Green and an SAU employee.
Green, one of two Sandown board members, has spoken about the incident on her blog, saying that a brief argument was partially the result of miscommunication and the matter was resolved seemingly amicably. While the employee apologized, Green said, she did not do so, as she did not think she had anything to apologize for.
According to Green, the incident in question arose from Green’s concerns that her emails to the board were not being included in the correspondence folder for easy perusal by members or made available online, and were instead in a separate binder containing meeting minutes at the SAU office. She was directed to take the matter up with appropriate sources.
Superintendent Earl Metzler said that while he was out of the office during the incident, after hearing reports from staff he decided it was appropriate to investigate the matter. He alerted Green to his intentions via email.
The email reads, “Today it was reported to me that you were both disrespectful and harassing to several employees. Of course I will investigate this report and if validated I will need to limit your access to the SAU. This is both disturbing and unfortunate.”
After some in-house investigation, Metzler said it was only fair to ask the police to look into the matter to make sure no bias was involved.
Since that time Green has been barred from the SAU office until the investigation can occur.
Metzler said it was his job to protect employees from harassment, but Green would always be welcome to meet with him.
Green has been an outspoken member of the Timberlane and SAU boards since being elected a school board member last May. She has argued against policy and procedure of the school board and at their most recent meeting on July 16, her peers voted to censure her.
Metzler, calling Green an obstructionist, said she would not be allowed to use rudeness and disrespect, at the expense of employees, to accomplish her objectives.
The superintendent went on to say that should the police report indicate that inappropriate behavior had taken place, he would look to balance Green’s distance from employees with her need to continue in her role as a school board member.
Green said the accusations were completely un-founded.