Tribunal convenes to hear case of former Male H.S. principal Dav - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Tribunal convenes to hear case of former Male H.S. principal David Mike

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Fired Male High School principal David Mike began fighting to get his job back Tuesday during a hearing at the Jefferson County Board of Education.

The three-person tribunal -- none of whom lives in Jefferson County -- is hearing Mike's appeal of JCPS Superintendent Donna Hargens' October decision to fire Mike amid cheating allegations related to standardized testing.

A Kentucky Department of Education investigation found several violations occurred as a result of Mike and other staffers' failure to “ensure the security” of ACT Compass exams given in the fall of 2013.

In remarks before the panel, attorneys on both sides attempted to show contrasting versions of the events that led to the investigation.

"He was ridiculed and mocked publicly, subjected to media coverage that impugned his good name," William Walsh, Mike's attorney, said of his client. "He was run out of his job and he was essentially not supported by his employer -- an employer to whom he was unfailingly loyal."

"I anticipate that part of Mr. Walsh will indicate to you, and what he's going to offer by a way of a defense for Mr. Mike, is that, in a nutshell, all of these allegations were cooked up by people -- staff members, teachers -- at Male High School, who were disgruntled after Mr. Mike made some over-staffing decisions," said Byron Leet, an attorney for JCPS.

Testifying before the board, Kentucky Department of Education testing allegation coordinator Patsy Kenner said she visited Male with ACT investigators last fall to look into complaints over how the ACT Compass Test was administered in 2013.

Kenner spent more than an hour answering questions and said the allegations had the "potential of being major testing allegation" because teachers were accused of "teaching to the test."
In response to a question from Walsh, Kenner said she only spoke to Mike in the fall of 2013 and not in the Spring of 2014, when more details about the testing allegations came to light.

The tribunal is made up of three members. They include Winchester school administrator Betty Pace, Lexington teacher Jill Kaiser and Frankfort resident Beverly Standifer. The appeal could last several days.

More than two dozen witnesses are expected to testify.


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