Letter to editor stock art - row of mailboxes

In a Nov. 27 letter to the editor, Jonathan Drewes, Prior Lake Savage Area Schools Board Treasurer, admitted to making inappropriate remarks about a teacher prior to a public meeting over six weeks ago. (The district claims to have a zero tolerance for these types of actions.)

Shortly thereafter, the teachers union arranged a meeting with Mr. Drewes — did he show up? It is reasonable to believe a complaint was filed against Mr. Drewes. What were the consequences for his actions as an elected official? Why wasn’t the public formally informed?

It may appear the school board and district were doing nothing with the union to remedy this situation. It also may appear the school board and district were hoping this would go away.

At the Nov. 22 school board meeting, many speakers addressed current concerns and situations within the PLSAS district. At this meeting, signs appeared asking about the Drewes situation and specifically asking for his resignation. With local news crews filming, did this public reminder of the situation force the hand of Drewes? Magically, a letter to the editor appears after the heated school board meeting with these public signs highlighting his mistakes.

Again, should elected officials be held to a higher standard? As stated in Drewes' letter, “to oversee the district in becoming equitable, inclusive, and anti-racist in policies, beliefs, and actions.” Whether intended or not, his words hurt more than one individual. He devalued many other teachers, students and members of the community.

Yes, we need to learn from our mistakes. However, in a public capacity charged with overseeing policies, Drewes clearly violated these policies himself. The honorable action and consequence is for him to resign. Thank you for your service.

Natalie Barnes

Prior Lake

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