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School system reluctant to release any details about the matter except to, “a specific group of parents”
by Clellie Allen
WAKE FOREST — A Wake County Public School System (WCPSS) substitute teacher who recently worked at Jones Dairy Elementary is under investigation by the school system and the Wake County Sheriff’s Office for reasons not yet made public.
According to WCPSS spokesperson Samiha Khanna, a message was released July 24 to specific parents requesting information about “any concerns” they have about the teacher.
“In the interest of ensuring the well-being of our students, the administration of Jones Dairy Elementary has asked parents at the school to report any information their children may have shared regarding a former substitute teacher who worked at Jones Dairy on several occasions,” Khanna wrote in response to a public information request by this newspaper.
The text of the voice message left for parents by Jones Dairy Elementary Principal Rob Bendel cites “a number of questions from parents regarding a former substitute teacher,” and goes on to relay that the teacher in question is no longer employed by the school system.
Khanna declined to release the name of the substitute teacher under investigation, although the name has been provided to “a specific group of parents” at Jones Dairy Elementary, “to obtain information for an investigation,” according to Khanna.
The Wake Forest Weekly did not receive a reply to inquiries as to whether or not parents were required to sign a confidentiality agreement in exchange for the name of the person under investigation.
In the phone message, Bendel asked parents, “If your child shares any relevant information with you, please feel free to contact me to discuss it.”
Captain Jimmy Stevens of the Wake County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that there was “an alleged incident originating at Jones Dairy School,” but said the Sheriff’s Office was not ready “to name any suspect or to discuss the particulars of [the] ongoing investigation.”
July 24 phone message to parents
Hello, Parents. This is Rob Bendel, Principal at Jones Dairy Elementary School. Recently, I have received a number of questions from parents regarding a former substitute teacher, (name blacked out), who served as a substitute teacher at Jones Dairy on several occasions. He is no longer employed by the school district. While I am not in a position to share a great deal of information, the school system and I want to assure you that we have responded promptly and appropriately to the concerns. If your child shares any relevant information with you, please feel free to contact me to discuss it. well-being is my number one priority. I assure you I take that responsibility seriously.