Earlier this week it was widely reported that SM North teacher Ben Keech was suspended for remarks made during a class. The Shawnee Mission School District will not comment on personnel issues, but the procedures for disciplinary actions against a teacher are spelled out in the contract between the district and the National Education Association of Shawnee Mission.
Disciplinary steps can include a verbal reprimand, a written reprimand, suspension with pay, suspension without pay, non-renewal or termination. Non-renewal, termination and suspension can be subject to a grievance. By contract terms, the deputy superintendent of operations must authorize suspensions. The relevant section follows:
“The above disciplinary actions are non-grievable except for non-renewal, termination, or suspension. Suspensions with or without pay must have the authorization of the Deputy Superintendent for Operations. Where circumstances permit, the Deputy Superintendent for Operations will allow the employee an opportunity to be heard prior to taking action on such suspensions. The employee may bring a personal representative to such a meeting.”
The contract also lays out a detailed grievance procedure which includes three progressive levels. At the final level, the grievance can be submitted to binding arbitration.