homepage logo

Investigator finds BEA School acted properly in assault case

By Staff | Apr 15, 2018

BEA staff members Shannon Swanson (back row left side) and Becky Anderson (back row right side) brought this group of students to the BEA School Board meeting last Monday as part of their presentation.

Blue Earth Area School Board chairman Jesse Haugh read a letter from attorney and investigator Michelle Soldo, of Soldo Consulting, at the last School Board meeting on Monday, April 9.

Soldo had been hired by the board to investigate whether or not the district’s actions in the aftermath of the assault case allegedly involving BEA students Wyatt Tungland, Dalton Nagel, Blake Barnett, and Caden Ochsendorf, were in compliance with the Minnesota State High School League.

According to the letter from Soldo, district officials conducted timely and thorough preliminary and expanded investigations of the assault report. The letter also stated “speculation, conjecture and uninformed allegations that district actions were not prompt and appropriate are refuted by the record.”

At the conclusion of the letter from Soldo, the attorney indicated her investigation into the assault case has been completed.

Also at the meeting, Blue Earth Area youth development service coordinator Shannon Swanson, who works primarily with students from the 10th through 12th grade, discussed current student involvement in peer helping programs at BEA schools.

As Swanson explained, the Youth Frontiers Program is designed to provide a positive structure for young people which will allow them to make prudent decisions in all aspects of their lives.

“There are a lot of positive things that we run, and it is mostly the students going out into the community and trying to make a difference in any way possible,” Swanson said. “It’s a great way for students to interact with kids they may not see on a regular basis.”

Meanwhile, sixth grade science teacher Becky Anderson also addressed the board as she teaches an elective class entitled “Character Strong.” Anderson said the main objective of the course is to teach youngsters how to become comfortable in leadership roles.

“The children are realizing they do have the power of influence over their peers and other people,” Anderson said. “The goal is to make that influence of power a good power.”

Other items from the meeting included:

The board approved a base bid of $62,375 from Nieman Roofing Company to complete Blue Earth Area High School’s 2018 re roofing project.

The hire of custodian Sierra Kafka, and resignation of orchestra teacher Alicia Corbett were approved. A leave of absence for Carma Sunken was also authorized by the School Board.

A total of 24 coaches for Blue Earth Area spring sports season were approved by the board.

Teacher of the Year and retiree recognition will take place on Wednesday, April 25 from 4 to 6 p.m. at Hamilton Hall.