Letter to the Editor, Opinion

July 10, 2021

My family and I moved to Lee’s Summit in 1965. Our children went through school here, my wife taught here, we have been involved. I have seen superintendents come and go.

I have never observed such an abuse of authority as we observed at the June 23rd school board meeting. Joe Oswald, a highly respected teacher and coach of 27 years was accused of repeating a racial slur as if it was something he just decided to do.

We then learned after watching the proceedings that went on until past two the following morning, that he was simply complying with what he, and all other teachers, were instructed to do in the processing of a disciplinary event. The procedure was to read back to the student involved what they had said in order to guarantee the accuracy of the report. So that is what he did.

We observed witness after witness, with years of experience, and first hand knowledge, of Joe Oswald give glowing accounts of his devotion for his students. The only testimony against him was issued by superintendent David Buck or staff that report to him.

To my knowledge no tenured teacher has ever been terminated because of a single incident and without a warning of any kind. So why now?

Bob Hendricks
Lee’s Summit, Mo.