Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Eastern Idaho High School Prepares For Tense Fall Semester

Posted By on Tue, Aug 5, 2014 at 8:51 AM

Tension could be the watchword at an Eastern Idaho high school this fall, as a teacher has been ordered to write a daily list of all interaction with her co-workers.

The nastiness began last spring as hundreds of parents, students and educators witnessed a hearing involving a veteran teacher at Snake River High School. Elaine Asmus, a 29-year veteran of the high school's science department got into a bit of hot water when she had a heated exchange with a first-year science teacher who also happened to be the wife of the district school superintendent.

A string of witnesses were called before the hearing and the mess turned into a social media firestorm, according to the Idaho State Journal.

Ultimately, Asmus was told that she could return to her duties with one year of probation, but KIDK-TV reports that Asmus must now "record all interaction with her co-workers on a daily basis and would have to submit a full report every Monday." Asmus wanted to talk to the school board about what she considered to be a punitive, purposeless exercise, but the board said that she needed to file a grievance in order to negotiate the terms of the probation, and she had already missed the deadline to submit such a grievance.

"A lawsuit is possible," said Asmus' attorney, Paul Stark. "The probation plan itself was punitive, vindictive and unprofessional."

KIDK reports that it made several unsuccessful attempts to contact the district for comment.

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