WARSAW, N.Y. (WIVB) - Warsaw parents have been contacting News 4 about rumors of a big shake up in the local school district.
Right now, Superintendent Valerie Burke still has a job in the Warsaw Central School District, despite rumors to the contrary. But State Police tell News 4 that Burke was arrested for DWI in May of 2011, blowing a .15 percent BAC. Burke was pulled over on the 490 in the City of Rochester when police say she was swerving in and out of lanes.
Donna Veihdeffer said, "I'm not happy. This lady is supposed to be representing the children and the school and that doesn't seem like she's representing very good."
Many parents are outraged that this has been kept hidden for some time. And though rumors said Burke was dismissed, the school board president tells News 4 the superintendent is merely taking some planned time off. However, it was unclear when Burke would be returning to school.
The revelation came after a school board meeting had to be postponed earlier this week. According to the Warsaw Country Courier, the meeting ended abruptly Tuesday when members went into a closed executive session during what was supposed to be an open meeting. During that session, the paper reports Burke was escorted into the closed session, which was the last time she was seen on school property.
Benita Martin said, "[She's] in charge of our children every day, is a role model for our kids. Everyone's human and everyone makes mistakes, but when you're someone who's affiliated with the school and our kids and dealing with problems, they have to have someone that they can look up to."
Many question still surround why Burke's DWI is just coming to light, and it is unclear if she was required to report that arrest to the board. Taxpayers were hoping to get answers Thursday night at the school board's meeting. But just like they did on Tuesday, board members abruptly went into executive session, leaving taxpayers with more questions than answers.
There was also no talk Thursday night of new allegations against the Warsaw wrestling coach. Coach Rob Hirsch had previously been suspended over an alleged bullying incident, but was later reinstated. The Wyoming County Sheriff's Office investigated reports of underage drinking at a wrestling conference in Silverlake on August 4th. But deputies found no criminal wrongdoing and turned the case over to the school district.
With board members giving no answers on either situation, it is unclear if any investigation is taking place into the wrestling conference, or whether Burke will face punishment for her DWI arrest.
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