GERMANTOWN, Wis. – A Wisconsin kindergarten teacher who stomped and smashed signs promoting Gov. Scott Walker at a county fair will return to her job after a lengthy district investigation.
April Kay Smith was suspended with pay from her teaching position at Germantown’s Amy Belle Elementary School after she was charged with disorderly conduct for an outburst at the Jefferson County Fair July 9, Watchdog.org reports.
Witness Roxane Stillman told police Smith damaged several signs at a booth run by the Jefferson County Republican Party some time after the fair had shut down. Stillman followed Smith and called in a police officer, who noted the teacher’s “glassy and bloodshot eyes and slurred speech,” according to an incident report obtained by the news site.
A preliminary breath test revealed Smith had a .06 blood-alcohol level at the time.
Smith initially denied any wrongdoing, but eventually “confessed to damaging and ripping out the signs,” according to the report.
“She stated her husband told her to lie and that she’s just so angry with Scott Walker due to the fact that she was a school teacher,” the report cited by Watchdog states.
Act 10 legislation ushered through the legislature by Walker in 2011 significantly curtailed the collective bargaining privileges of most of the state’s public employee unions, including teachers unions.
Smith eventually paid a $169 fine in October after pleading no contest to the disorderly conduct charge.
In a statement issued by the Germantown school district Wednesday, the school board contends it “has determined that it is appropriate to restore” Smith to active teaching status, but it also “imposed several conditions to address this situation and to make certain no other similar incidents occur in the future,” GermantownNow.com reports.
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“The board of education requires that all district employees understand that, as public servants, they are role models for district students and should exhibit appropriate public conduct, whether on or off the job,” according to the statement, which does not detail the conditions.
“The board of education wishes to make it clear that it does not condone Ms. Smith’s conduct,” the statement continues. “For that reason, the board has taken serious, remedial measures to address this situation.”
School officials noted that Smith has been an otherwise good teacher and the incident “is not representative of Ms. Smith’s character, or her record of service to our country and our district.”
“The board and administration wish to stress that they will continue to monitor this situation to ensure that the highest possible educational and behavioral standards are observed by all district personnel in working with the children of the Germantown School District,” the statement concludes, according to GermantownNow.com.
Watchdog.org reports Smith will return to an “alternative teaching assignment,” but the district statement did not detail the new position or when she will return.
School officials were unavailable for comment when contacted by the news site.