PALMDALE — After four months, the formal investigation into the Summerwind Elementary School “noose” incident is complete and the report in its final draft form.
Palmdale School District’s governing Board will hold a special closed session meeting at 8:30 a.m. Friday in the Ross W. Amspoker Board Room at the District office, 39139 10th St. East.
Superintendent Raul Maldonado asked the Board to schedule a special meeting so the report can be presented as soon as possible.
“I want to get that report before the board as soon as possible” Maldonado said in a statement. “We’ll also need to find out what the next step is and when we can decide what to do with this information.”
Maldonado added, “We have followed the letter of the law every step of the way, to ensure due process for everyone and now we need to make sure we continue to protect ourselves against any lawsuits or claims of wrong doing.”
Summerwind parents, community members and activists demanded answers after a photograph of four former Summerwind Elementary first-grade teachers pointing and smiling at a noose in the teachers’ lounge became public last May. Former Summerwind Elementary Principal Linda Brandts allegedly took the photo on May 1 and emailed it to Summerwind staff. The District placed Brandts and the four teachers on administrative leave pending an investigation. Brandts no longer works for the District. She reportedly took a job out of the area. Brandts resigned from her seat on the Southern Kern Unified School District governing Board in July.
The District held a town hall meeting on May 14, where some of the speakers said the photo is an example of the racism endemic in the District. Others called for cultural sensitivity training for all employees.