GERMANTOWN, Tenn. — Parents had questions for the Germantown Board of Education Monday night as board members met publicly for the first time since two scandals involving Houston High School staffers came to light.
The parents who spoke before the board weren’t allowed to name any of the staffers they referred to, frustrating some.
“We all know names and we all know who is in the scandal,” said parent Cherie Didier.
Former Houston High School principal Kyle Cherry was investigated by Germantown police after showing up to a teacher’s home in the middle of the night last summer with a ladder propped against her 19-year-old daughter’s window.
Cherry resigned a day after WREG broke the story of how choir teacher Dr. William Rayburn was suspended as the school investigated him for allegedly kissing, touching and making inappropriate comments to students.
“I find that to be fully believable,” said Kris Stewart, a parent of a former Houston High School choir student.
Stewart said her daughter never experienced any of Rayburn’s allegedly lewd behavior, but said she was concerned how Rayburn allegedly responded when another student complained about his teaching style two years ago.
Stewart said Rayburn had his daughter call the complaining student to intimidate her.
“Said that she thought that her and my daughter were trying to get her dad fired and if she found out that that was the case that they would be sorry,” said Stewart.
It’s the latest in a pattern of problems emerging that even the superintendent acknowledges went beyond sexual misconduct.
“The first allegations that we became aware of were not related to inappropriate behavior, it was about concerns of an angry tirade on a trip,” said Superintendent Jason Manuel.
Manuel said he couldn’t say when that complaint was made, but defended how the district handles complaints.
He also declined to resign after a parent called on him to at Monday’s meeting.
“If you have a situation that you feel like hasn’t been resolved at the school level and you don’t feel like you’ve been handled correctly, please bounce it up to the next level and we will address it,” he said.
Manuel said when the investigation into Rayburn wraps up — which he said could take several months — the public will learn the outcome.