Horse Creek Academy Executive Director addresses budget cuts, administration reduction and violent outburst by a teacher

AIKEN COUNTY, S.C. (WJBF) - A charter school in Aiken County is investigating an incident involving a teacher, while working around operating without a Senior-Level administrator.

A memo sent out to parents of Horse Creek Academy says due to a decline in revenue beginning January 26, 2018 Horse Creek Academy will eliminate the principal position.

Attention HCA Parents

January 12, 2018

From the Desk of Dr. Frank G. Roberson

There will be a change in administrative leadership, effective January 26, 2018. 

Due to a declining revenue, the position of the principal will be eliminated. As the Executive director, I detected an overload in Senior-Level Administration. Rather than spread the revenue cut among staff, a decision was made to eliminate surplus administration, a decision that will not negatively impact the students and teachers in the classroom. The Principal's final day will be January 26, 2018.

The charter school operates on a $3.5 million dollar budget a year.

Executive Director Dr. Frank Roberson says the board had to cut nearly $160,000 dollars in operating cost. Roberson says cutting a Senior-Level Administrator and reducing additional expenses, such as lowering the power bill, balanced the budget.

"As always the case, you want to be as less impactful where learning occurs as possible." Roberson told WJBF Newschannel 6. "So we wanted to move away from the classroom."

Nearly 3 weeks, after the principal was terminated the charter school issued the statement on its Facebook page.

Press Release

February 16, 2018

Today, February 16, 2018, Public Safety was called to Horse Creek Academy to assist a teacher who apparently had a reaction to prescription medication, causing a temporary lapse in professional judgment, resulting in unacceptable behavior. A desk was pushed violently across the room, and a small object was thrown across the room. Fortunately, no one was seriously injured.

Accordingly, the teacher has been placed on administrative leave until acomprehensive evaluation of the situation has been performed.

If you have questions or concerns, please contact the school on Monday.

A teacher experienced a lapse in judgement after having a reaction to a prescription medication. According to the schools account of the incident the teacher violently pushed a desk across the room and a small object was thrown. The teacher has since been placed on paid administrative leave.

Roberson says the H.C.A. Board is requiring the teacher to seek medical attention.

"At no point were the students actually in the way of harm. However, we did receive reports and we've had discussions with a student and her parents, where the desk that was actually pushed, hit the students leg, but no medical attention was needed in that regard." Roberson said.

The incident stirred up a slew of emotions from parents of social media.

"As far as I have been aware the kids seem to like and relate to him well," one parent said. "I don't think this behavior is appropriate in any way. However it would be an absolute shame to ruin this young man's life."

Another parent says "I do not feel safe sending my kids to this school with an outraged teacher on the loose."

"Now I will say this, there is reservation about the return of the teacher in the classroom setting" Roberson told WJBF NewsChannel 6. "The administration is going to have to make certain, that there is a comfort level between the parents and the students."

The Executive Director says due to growth in the area, Horse Creek Academy board members have plans to expand the school over the next 5 to 10 years.

Count on WJBF NewsChannel 6 to bring you the latest on this developing story. 


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