Superintendent Update: Magistrate Rules No Probable Cause; Teachers Vote 'No Confidence'
Pope said he fears ongoing controversies could become a distraction for students.
The Marlborough Educators Association (MEA) on Thursday approved a vote of no confidence in Superintendent Anthony Pope, just hours before a clerk magistrate in Marlborough District Court ruled there was no probable cause to charge Pope for assault as requested by a high school guidance counselor.
A magistrate ruled there was insuffient evidence to move forward with criminal charges against the embattled superintendent, who was accused of pushing the female staff member during a visit to the school.
Marlborough police had earlier investigated the allegations and likewise found there was not enough evidence to warrant charges.
The teachers vote came in support of a resolution which claims Pope showed disregard for the welafe of students and unprofessional behavior that has "had a demoralizing effect on the entire school community."
“Although the superintendent is aware of these deficiencies, he has not addressed them in the 2011-2012 school year,” MEA President Brendan St. George said in a statement announcing the vote. “His actions are not in the best interest of our students. We fear that they will have a negative rippling effect on student success and achievement in the district for years to come.”
Later in the day, Pope appeared in front of a clerk magistate for a probable cause hearing on whether the superintendent should face criminal charges for allegedly pushing a staff member at Marlborough High School.
Only Pope, his attorney, his accuser and her attorney and direct witnesses to the incident were permitted into the hearing room. Prior to the hearing, Pope told reporters he worried that the controversies could become a distraction to classroom learning and long-term goals.
Emerging from the hearing room after about 40 minutes, the parties quickly went in opposite directions, with Pope's attorney saying "we have nothing to say."