The Iliad

The Student News Site of Poway High School

The Student News Site of Poway High School

The Iliad

The Student News Site of Poway High School

The Iliad

Accusations spark investigation

Superintendent placed on administrative leave

Superintendent Marian Kim Phelps was placed on paid administrative leave on Feb. 1, while the investigation for her interactions with players and coaches of her daughter’s softball team at Del Norte is being looked into.

News about the Superintendent of Poway Unified School District, Marian Kim Phelps’ alleged harassment of the Del Norte girls’ softball team has been circulating. Board meetings have been held, with Phelps in attendance that included public comments discussing the allegations made about her by the Del Norte coaches, softball team, and parents. Allegedly, on the night of the Del Norte girls’ softball banquet last spring, the girls on the team did not clap loudly enough for Phelps’s daughter, which was said to have started the conflict. Players told the school board at their Nov. 9 meeting about personal phone calls and posts on social media.

“She used her power and influence to bully our students, and essentially break up our softball program at Del Norte,” senior Miranda Mosqueda told the board. According to Tom Peronto, a coach of the girls’ softball team at Del Norte, none of the coaches at the banquet were consulted about the events of that evening.

“The list of abuses of power include directly contacting a student at midnight following the banquet without consulting the parents after not getting a desired response, blatantly threatening that student and nine other softball players with losing their senior graduation privileges, another clear abuse,” Peronto told the board.

The Superintendent’s daughter is a pitcher on the team who alleges that she was bullied by members of the team. Michael Roberts, a parent of one of the girls on the softball team and a former coach, expressed his concerns at the board meeting held on Nov. 9 along with other members affiliated with Del Norte High.

Marian Kim Phelps told CBS news “I never threatened any student. I never would. I’ve never talked to any student about making threats about them not graduating. All of those accusations are completely false and fabricated.”

On Nov. 15 the board decided to contact an outside law firm to conduct an independent investigation concerning the Del Norte Softball program. According to a statement released from the Full Board, the investigation would include “staff, students, administrators, and the Superintendent.”

When announcing her leave the statement from the board read, “We have reached a sensitive point in the investigation and received information regarding the impact of this process. In an effort to avoid distraction and to ensure continued focus on the District’s business and commitment to serving our students and community, the Board is placing the Superintendent on paid administrative leave.”

According to Chief Communications Officer Christine Paik, the board would not comment beyond their official statement. On Feb. 8 the board appointed Associate Superintendent Greg Mizel as Interim Superintendent.

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Bernell Bello, Editor-in-Chief
I enjoy editing and writing for the Pop Culture page and writing for the Feature page. Some of my interests are reading, watching “One Tree Hill”, and clothes shopping. My favorite quote is “You've got no reason to be afraid, you're on your own, kid,” by Taylor Swift. In the future, I will be juggling all of my passions and living my life to the fullest. (Class of 2024)

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