WILLIAMS VALLEY HEARING AGAIN CONTINUED
Suspended principal offers testimony
TOWER CITY — Suspended Williams Valley High School Principal Tracey Weller testified for the first time Tuesday night in a due process hearing.
The Williams Valley school board again continued the hearing to a later date at which time the school board will decide whether Weller stays employed by the district. The date of the continuation was not set. No further information was available as of press time Tuesday.
During the hearing Tuesday, district resident Angie Bixler presented an online petition she started to reinstate Weller, which gained 86 signatures.
The petition states: “The principal of Williams Valley High School, Mrs. Tracey Weller is being fired for what we in the community are hearing is ‘willful misconduct.’ She was standing up for all her students who she treats as her own and would never put students in danger. Not only is she a principal of the school, but she is an inspiration to all who have ever met her.
“Something needs to be done to bring her back. She has helped make Williams Valley what it is today and without her nothing will be the same. We as a community should do everything in our power to bring her back. Reinstate Mrs. Weller immediately!”
Weller was charged with incompetency, willful neglect and failure to comply with school laws of the commonwealth, including official direct and established policy of the board of directors and violation of the Pennsylvania professional standards for a professional employee. She was suspended, without pay, effective March 2.
The school district dropped its appeal for Weller to file workers compensation on the advice of its counsel.
The situation stems from Weller questioning students about a threatening February Instagram post. She was notified about the post and while two students with possible information on the posting were in Weller’s office, the
suspect walked in, according to testimony provided. The two students were later threatened outside school property by the suspect’s brother.
Those who have already testified included Superintendent Diane Niederriter, and Sgt. Brian Wolfe and Trooper Rob Blystone, both of the Lykens barracks of the Pennsylvania State Police.
The due process hearing began May 2 and was continued to May 22 and Tuesday.
Weller was represented by Michael M. Monsour with the firm of Kozloff Stoudt, Wyomissing. Weller asked that the hearing be public.
The district administration was represented by Benjamin L. Pratt with the law firm of Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP, Harrisburg.
Nicholas A. Quinn, Pottsville, the district’s solicitor,
oversaw the hearing.
Suspended Williams Valley High School Principal Tracey Weller testifies during Day 3 of her due process hearing Tuesday.
The school board’s solicitor, Nicholas A. Quinn, oversees the due process hearing Tuesday.