Minor Daniels Academy teachers want to leave the school over vio - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Minor Daniels Academy teachers want to leave the school over violence

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- West Buechel police say students at a new JCPS alternative school are responsible for a rash of crimes in the area. 

Three people addressed the JCPS school board Monday night talking about Minor Daniels Academy and all of them said it's dangerous.

"I have been assaulted, most were very minor, several times by students that were not getting their way in the two months since school started," said one male teacher.

“The bad news is, is that 90 percent of the teachers have already said that they will seek a transfer at the end of the school year," said Jefferson County Teachers Association Executive Director DeeAnn Flaherty.

Those were just a couple comments Monday night from the JCPS school board meeting. Teachers saying Minor Daniels Academy is full of students who don’t obey the rules.

The alternative school houses 174 middle and high school students who have behavioral issues.

A survey by the Jefferson County Teachers Association found that 86 percent of teachers do not feel safe in the building – and out of the 22 teachers on staff, 12 would leave right now if they could.

“Reasons given include lack of operational metal detectors, volatile students who flip tables without recourse by the administration, severe student on student violence, and even a teacher hoisted up by students and thrown," said Flaherty.

Those problems are now pouring over to police.

"Well they're not in school when they're supposed to be," said West Buechel Assistant Police Chief Chris Thomas.

West Buechel officers and JCPS both confirmed that a teacher's been locked in a closet, another had her car stolen, and other staff members have been assaulted. All those crimes were on the Minor Daniels campus.

Police say there have also been problems with car thefts and fights, as well as shoplifting and vandalism at the nearby Target and Walmart stores.

"The school kicks the kids out when they have problems with them and they're under age,” said Thomas. “We can't even do that with an underage child. We have to drop them off at a safe place or have their legal guardian pick them up.

“I had no idea that those particular issues were going on," said school board member Chris Brady.

He raised concerns about the school even after he voted for it.

“As a result of that particular inquiry, I got a fairly attacking email response to that - basically said I was attacking some cocoon of change -- which was unfortunate, because I was just simply passing on concerns from teachers that are already at some of our other alternative schools," said Brady.

Superintendent Dr. Donna Hargens denied a request for an interview twice Monday night, but a spokesperson says the district is trying to change the culture at the school and that if a student is suspended, that does not guarantee they cannot commit mischief during or after school.

Previous: Police: JCPS needs to address 'serious problems' at Minor Daniels Academy

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