Wilt Elementary parents upset after meeting



Posted on August 15, 2009 at 6:39 PM

Updated Tuesday, Oct 13 at 1:55 PM

Previous Coverage:

(WHAS11) - Wilt Elementary School's cafeteria was packed with parents, raising their hands, waiting to ask questions and comment on fourth grade teacher David Grider and this security guard.

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"The decision of the district to return Mr. Grider to the school stands. And we need as a community to get past the emotion and drama that it's caused," said Wilt Elementary Principal Kimberly Kent.

That was the purpose of this meeting. But an hour and a half later emotions were flying.

"If it's serious enough to have armed policemen outside my son's classroom, I have a right to know what's going on," complained one parent.

"We don't get any notification? That's unjust," complained another parent.

"Somebody lay out the facts and specifics to us, now," said an upset parent.

For the first time-months after this all happened-the principal is now allowed to talk about it.

"I received a call when I was at home on Dec. 10th that Mr. Grider had made a threat against my life. That came from JCPS security that were notified by LMPD," said Kent.

She says the security guard was partially her decision to ensure the school's safety.

"There is nothing in Mr. Grider's file. No criminal acts, nothing to make you feel that he'd be aggressive," said Janet Lietner, the Elementary School Liaison.

But parents still don't want Grider at Wilt. And more than 70 parents came looking for a resolution...

"Did anything come out of this meeting? [Grunt}," said Frank Buchenberger.

"It was intended to relieve parents of anxiety, it didn't. It increased our frustration levels," said Melissa Williams.

"It probably shouldn't have ever happened. It certainly didn't resolve anything," said Steve Neal, Executive Director of JCTA.

But Principal Kent promised one thing-she would do what she could to keep their children safe.

"My own child is here everyday in Kindergarten and I'm here, I think that speaks for itself."

We've had several parents call our newsroom and say they support Grider and he's a good teacher.

Steve Neal, the Executive Director of JCTA, says there are teachers at Wilt who support him.

JCPS says Grider is at Wilt to stay. He has undergone several medical evaluations and those reports say he's not a threat to anyone.