BRADENTON, Fla. - In three separate votes of 5-0, the Manatee County School Board chose to suspend three school administrators without pay.
The three administrators include former Manatee High School Principal and assistant superintendent Bob Gagnon, former Assistant Principal Matthew Kane, and former Assistant Principal Gregg Faller. Each of the three had attorneys speak on their behalf at Monday night's standing-room-only meeting.
'I ask that you reject the suggestion he be suspended without pay, " Faller's attorney Jon Weiffenbach said.
Their fate lay in the hands of the school board.
District Superintendent Rick Mills had recommended each be suspended without pay and eventually terminated for their alleged role in the Manatee High School sex scandal involving assistant football coach Rod Frazier.
Frazier is facing criminal charges of inappropriate sexual conduct with students and staff. Gagnon, Faller, and Kane are all currently facing criminal charges for failing to report child abuse in that case.
'If somebody brought to him a legitimate, possibly legitimate, reason to believe, or suspect, that there was child abuse going on, he would have reported it"," said Kane's attorney Brett McIntosh.
But in the three separate votes, each one unanimous, the wheels rolled on toward their termination. Faller, Gagnon, and Kane were each suspended without pay.
"I'm telling you that I'm confident that there's no way on God's green Earth that in a court of law you're going to have this upheld," Gagnon's attorney Richard Reinhart argued to the Board. "All this was was a hatchet job by political hacks."
The three men now each have 21 days to file a request for an administrative hearing before the board takes up their termination later this month.
Both Reinhart and McIntosh have already stated their intent to do so.
Two other administrators implicated in the Frazier scandal - former investigator Debra Horne and former staff attorney Scott Martin, chose to resign from their jobs voluntarily before Monday night's meeting. Horne is also facing criminal charges of failing to report child abuse.
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