GRANTS PASS, Ores. – Less than a week after two Grants Pass School District educators were fired for violating several policies NBC5 News is getting a first look at the investigation. The school district hired a private investigator, former Grants Pass Police Chief Bill Landis to put together the report.
The report is over 300 pages long. It’s broken up into 4 parts separating the two educators into individual cases. One part of the report is completely redacted. But the other elements paint a clearer picture of what the school board knew when making its decision to fire the educators.
A report from Bill Landis and his firm Pacific Consulting and Investigations looked into the conduct of North Middle School Educators, Rachel Damiano, and Katie Medart. Landis’ report found they violated district policies and the school board followed his recommendation to terminate both educators in a 4-to-3 vote last Thursday.
The report totals over 300 pages. It shows former 7th-grade science teacher Katie Medart told the district’s HR Director that school district leaders knew about the ‘I Resolve’ movement prior to it being streamed on social media.
Within the report, Medart says quote,
“He stated that he didn’t believe that there would be any discipline in nature. Just wanted to share a concern.”
As we previously reported, the educators said that this spring in a YouTube video.
“Prior to us releasing ‘I Resolve’ Resolution for gender identity policies online, a number of [Grants Pass] School District 7 leaders were fully aware and showed support for these policies,” said Damiano.
But the school board found the educators’ actions violated seven different district policies, including participating in a political campaign on district time, while using district equipment. In the report, the School District’s HR Director asked if district time or district equipment was used to create the resolution. Medart said yes, but said it was not during teaching time. Regardless, it was a violation of school board policy. But the report itself isn’t fully backed by the school board.
“It was a little disappointing to hear one board member say that she just believed the investigator. Okay, but he made mistakes,” said Board Member Gary Richardson.
He spoke at length during last week’s hearing saying he didn’t believe some of the evidence in the case. However, School Board Member Brian Delagrange, along with 3 other members agreed with the investigation.
“The board policy was violated. It was not to render any sort of opinion on the ‘I Resolve’ Movement itself,” said Delagrange.
While the former educators are no longer at the school district, ‘I Resolve’ remains on social platforms. The educators are still suing the district in federal court over alleged violations of their 1st amendment rights. They told me previously that they were hesitant about the full report being released they say it doesn’t paint the full picture.
GPSD7 didn’t provide a third part of the investigation.
NBC5 News reporter Katie Streit comes from her hometown, Las Vegas. Katie went to the Hank Greenspun School of Journalism & Media Studies at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
While in Las Vegas, Katie won a Student Emmy for her coverage of the Las Vegas Shooting Anniversary. She also hosted and produced the university’s political news show, where she interviewed Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak and Congresswoman Dina Titus (NV-1). Her passion for politics turned into a coveted internship at the US Capitol in Washington D.C. In her final months working in the Las Vegas area, she was recognized for her journalism achievements by the Nevada Broadcaster’s Foundation.
Katie is excited to tell the stories of local Southern Oregonians and Northern Californians. Feel free to contact her at [email protected]