SVUESD Board Statement: Pending Lawsuit

SVUESD Board Statement
Re: Pending Lawsuit

On 6/15/2021 the Southwestern Vermont Union Elementary School District Board was named in a lawsuit filed by a former teacher at Molly Stark Elementary schools, Ms. Rosa Van Wie.

Ms. Van Wie was in the second year of her contract with the District and was in her probationary period as an educator in the District. Teachers in this probationary period may be non-renewed for any reason other than those prohibited by law. While Ms. Van Wie has alleged discriminatory reasons for her non-renewal, her allegations are unfounded and not supported by the actual events. The District does not provide specific point by point refutation of allegations like Ms. Van Wie’s in the media. The District will defend this matter as needed moving forward.

While it is the responsibility of this board to examine educational practices and in doing so correct the implicit and explicit bias that is all too common in today’s society, Ms. Van Wie’s departure from the district was not due to any such bias.

The board would like to express our strong support for Superintendent, Jim Culkeen and Principal, Donna Bazyk; both of whom followed the collective bargaining agreement, law and due process in this matter. Both work tirelessly for what is best for the children in the Molly Stark Elementary School and the District as a whole.

Scott McEnaney
SVUESD Board Clerk