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Jefferson City school board releases behavioral audit

The Jefferson City school board met for a closed session Wednesday afternoon with staff at an elementary school to discuss the findings of a behavioral audit.

The report was initiated by issues happening at multiple schools, including at Moreau Heights Elementary.

The audit ended up limiting the scope of some issues that ended up being non-issues.

ABC 17 News first reported in October onallegations of behavioral issueswith students at Moreau Heights and West Elementary schools, where teachers said things were out of control.

The report did not find that Moreau Heights has a higher rate of aggressive student behavior, but stated, “significantly, we did find that clear expectations regarding the use of behavior interventions have not been set at Moreau Heights, and staff has not been held accountable for implementing them with fidelity.”

The report received by ABC 17 News is a condensed report, because the detailed report contains information regarding students.

The audit did reveal there have been “multiple violations at Moreau Heights of administrative procedures and board policy as well as state and federal law with respect to maintaining the confidentiality of student information.”

The auditor, Shellie Guin, said there are things in the report that aren’t pleasant to hear, especially for some people who work in the district.

Guin said the change in demographics forced the district to do what she referred to as “patchwork,” meaning the district was forced to change things quickly and without much time put into the change.

Leadership issues were also a problem in the district, referring to the turnover rate of faculty who left.

This year, Moreau Heights will have its 5th principal in the last 7 years. The report said teachers reportedly referred to the building environment as “toxic,” adding to the negativity in the school atmosphere.

While problems at Moreau Heights were addressed in the audit, the review said the behavioral issues were not only unique to the school, but consistent across all 12 elementary schools in the district.

School board president John Ruth told ABC 17 News he is confident the district can overcome what has happened.

You can read the full 11-page reporthere.

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