Ozark School District Retaliation Against JROTC

Read the story of how a Retired US Army Major was forced from his position by the Ozark, MO School District. 

About this Story

Case Summary

This website presents the clear case of the extreme authoritative abuse from the administration of the Ozark School District against a Retired U.S. Army Major, the Senior Army Instructor responsible for the District’s phenomenally successful JROTC program.  Exploring the balance between providing sufficiently strong leadership and overstepping one’s authority in this Important Note to Readers will set the stage for the unfolding story.

History

Timeline of Events

My story illustrating the Ozark School District’s abuse of authority begins with this previous overview and spans the following timeframe…

AUGUST 2019

History Of District Conflict With JROTC

I refused the District’s demand that I coach the rifle team.

AUGUST 2019

NOVEMBER 2019

History Of District Conflict With JROTC

 I shared with JROTC parents the District’s plan to relocate our program to the Ozark Innovation Center and invited parents to communicate their thoughts to the District on the planned move.

NOVEMBER 2019

NOVEMBER 2021

History Of District Conflict With JROTC

I informed the Army that the District was in violation of its agreement with the Army to permit JROTC to be run according to Army regulations.

NOVEMBER 2021

NOVEMBER 17, 2021

History Of District Conflict With JROTC

Principal informs me that District is dictating that we ignore aspects of Army JROTC uniform policy this year; I inform him that they are in violation of their agreement with the Army, that they are making our program non-compliant with Army regulations, and that I will have to report this fact to the Army.

NOVEMBER 17, 2021

NOVEMBER 19, 2021

Professional Improvement Plan

District serves me with a formal reprimand in the form of a Professional Improvement Plan.

NOVEMBER 19, 2021

NOVEMBER 30, 2021

Army JROTC Brigade Chief reminds District that they are obligated to adhere to Army regulations for JROTC program.

NOVEMBER 30, 2021

DECEMBER 7, 2021

Suspension

District suspends me pending investigation into “inappropriate messaging” in a class I had recently taught.

DECEMBER 7, 2021

DECEMBER 17, 2021

Notice Of Deficiency

School district’s attorney informs my attorney that the District finds me to be a “troublemaker” and has decided to give me a Notice of Deficiency (final notice required by law before they fire me).

DECEMBER 17, 2021

DECEMBER 21, 2021

 I request to know the charges against me and be permitted to answer them; superintendent says the investigation isn’t ready for my input yet.

DECEMBER 21, 2021

DECEMBER 22, 2021

I inform superintendent of my intent to request the school board review the District’s handling of my case.  He tells me the school board will not entertain my request.

DECEMBER 22, 2021

JANUARY 10, 2022

Interview Concerning Class Presentation

District interviews me about presentation; promises to be back in touch in 1-2 days.

JANUARY 10, 2022

JANUARY 13, 2022

I request to address the school board at its upcoming board meeting about retaliation from superintendent; superintendent denies request.

JANUARY 13, 2022

JANUARY 21, 2022

Ultimatum

Assistant superintendent offers me the ultimatum of resign (with clean disciplinary record) or be fired (with tarnished record); says he should have report in hand the following week and will recommend action on it.

JANUARY 21, 2022

JANUARY 26, 2022

I inform District I do not intend to resign.

JANUARY 26, 2022

FEBRUARY 9, 2022

I request status update from District; they respond two days later that they will be in contact with me soon.

FEBRUARY 9, 2022

FEBRUARY 15, 2022

Refusal To Hold Required Suspension Hearing

I inform superintendent that the District is past its 60-day deadline (required by District policy and RSMo § 105.264); he shuffles through three different excuses as to why they won’t afford me the required hearing.

FEBRUARY 15, 2022

FEBRUARY 28, 2022

Notice Of Deficiency

I inform school board that they are required to give me a hearing on my suspension.

I receive a Notice of Deficiency.  I am invited to resume teaching on 7 March.

FEBRUARY 28, 2022

MARCH 2, 2022

Resignation

submit my resignation.  (This is motivated by the Notice of Deficiency being so outrageously dishonest as to persuade me there is no prospect of continuing with the Ozark School District as well as the additional restrictions to classroom work only which would effectively cancel the season for the national championship special teams which I coach.)

MARCH 2, 2022

MARCH 3, 2022

Refusal To Hold Required Suspension Hearing

 School board president accepts my resignation, renews/extends my suspension until 31 May, and denies me the required hearing.

MARCH 3, 2022

MARCH 9, 2022

School Board Dereliction

I request to address the school board at its next board meeting.  District does not respond to my request.

MARCH 9, 2022

MAY 5, 2022

I request to meet with the newly elected board president and vice president.

MAY 5, 2022

MAY 10, 2022

Challenging Questions

I email to the board president and vice-president a list of challenging questions regarding principles and procedures about the handling of my case.

MAY 10, 2022

MAY 11, 2022

Matter Permanently Closed

Board president emails me that “that this matter is permanently closed” and that no member of the Board will respond to any further dialogue with me in any form on this matter.

MAY 11, 2022

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