After receiving a letter from the school district, parents of a North Omaha elementary school are angry to hear their longtime leader will not be returning.
After 15 years as principal of Central Park elementary, Mary Austin, will not come back to finish this school year. After a month of her absence, parents only recently received a letter saying she wouldn't return. Parent Brenda Gibler says, "I got a note home saying that they're gonna have a new principal, Dr. Christensen and that they're going to try to make the adjustment as well as possible."
Gibler says they just recently moved to the neighborhood and at first she wasn't sure if she wanted her son to attend school at central park. But Austin made her feel comfortable and right at home. "My student just started here this year and I med Ms. Austin and she is a lovely person and she's great with kids, there ain't one kid that came out the door that she didn't hug, or give a kiss to ya know everyday, I mean she made the school shine and I'm wondering myself what happened," Gibler says.
The president of the OPS teachers union says he's heard she's been out a while on administrative leave after a complaint was being investigated. He also says he heard another teacher filed the report based on student discipline. "I pray that she's okay and I pray that her families okay and what's going on. I just pray that she is well and I hope to see her again," Gibler says.
For the past month a retired OPS principal has led the school and now Cathy Christensen, who retired as Washington elementary's principal, has been appointed to Central Park's interim leader. She'll start November 5th.
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