Griffin's Regional Independent Press
In a personnel hearing conducted Tuesday, April 17, the Griffin-Spalding County Board of Education dismissed the sexual harassment complaint of Kennedy Road Middle School (KRMS) employee, Shonte Ivey, against Superintendent Dr. Curtis Jones.
The grievance was denied in a 3-1 vote with Michael Kendall , District 1, dissenting.
The board heard evidence from several witnesses, as well as Dr. Jones, Ivey and Jerry Lumley, a Macon attorney hired to conduct an investigation of the matter.
In her complaint, Ivey noted that while visiting KRMS, Dr. Jones made the comment that “he would give $20 for every female employee he saw in a bikini,” and specifically cited GSCS sexual harassment policy.
Several witnesses’ statements said that the context of Dr. Jones’ comment was in response to being asked to donate money for a fundraiser.
Jones told the board that he did not think the comment was appropriate and given the chance, would take the comment back.
Both Lumley and Dr. Jones’s lawyer, David Wolfe, told the board that they did not believe that the comment reached the level of sexual harassment.
“Given the totality of the circumstances and given Ms. Ivey’s statements, it just doesn’t rise to that level [of sexual harassment],” said Lumley.
During the proceedings it was suggested that the grievance was of a retaliatory nature, as Dr. Jones had filed a letter of reprimand with KRMS principle Brenda James-Ford regarding an investigation that resulted in eight KRMS teachers alleging they were told to change students’ grades to a C if the student was failing and they could not make contact with the parent after three attempts.
*This issue of The Grip went to press just hours after the board met, not allowing us to gather all the facts regarding grade changing investigation. The Grip will follow up as soon as possible. Check back regularly for up-to-date information. Ω