A second Stevens Point parent has come forward, accusing the superintendent of threatening her about a student-employee incident.
This comes after NewsChannel 7's story about another Stevens Point mother's similar situation. Back on Oct. 2, Tiffany Meyer says administrators never informed her what happened between her special needs 7-year-old and a male staff member. Just days later, she says Supt. Attila Weninger threatened her with a lawsuit when her brother posted a description of what happened on the NewsChannel 7 Facebook page.
Now, a police report from nearly two years ago has surfaced, alleging a teacher had an inappropriate relationship with a student. But a source for the victim says she was never told the outcome of the case.
In January of 2011, a Stevens Point Area Senior High graduate filed a verbal complaint with Stevens Point police, accusing her former teacher of sexual harassment. The teen told an officer, the teacher showed up at her home on her 18th birthday, asked her to sleep in a tent alone with him on a camping trip, and said he loved her, all while she was his student. The girl stopped the advances before they went too far.
"Because nothing physically happened, there is no criminal charge," said one Stevens Point woman. She says the victim was a friend of her son's, and that she confided in her about the alleged sexual harassment. Although law enforcement couldn't do anything, she assumed the school district would. She wants to remain anonymous but needed to share what followed when she asked the superintendent about the teacher's employment status.
In a private meeting with Mr. Weninger, she says he became increasingly aggressive, "put his fist down at the table and leaned across the table and pointed his finger at me. And said, if I dared to try to attack one of his teachers, that I would suffer the consequences."
Frustrated and scared, she says she stopped looking for answers. "I've never learned, I've never been able to. I've tried a few times to talk to a few school board members and again, it's confidential."
Some school board members say that's because they're also discouraged from discussing anything with the public, especially employee misconduct. Two members, who also don't want their identities revealed, say they're not surprised the woman was warned to stay out of it. They say Mr. Weninger tries to keep the board in the dark as well.
At a meeting on February 13, 2012, the superintendent asked the board to vote on his policy that would limit communication between them and the community. It read: "Board members must avoid discussion with other board members and citizens regarding district matters outside of properly posted meetings so as not to violate Wisconsin's Open Meetings Law."
It's true that board members do have to be careful when they talk with each other outside of a posted meeting, but there is nothing illegal about speaking to the community.
In a unanimous decision, the board denied the proposal, but the two members say it was a prime example of the superintendent's efforts to stop anyone from talking about district matters.
In response to the allegations, Mr. Weninger says they're all lies, that he's never threatened anyone ever, and says he doesn't know why people are saying he has.
The school board president confirms that the teacher who was accused of sexual harassment is still working at SPASH, but because NewsChannel 7 has not yet received a copy of his personnel file, he's not being name at this time.