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Letter from Dr. Shubel 3/5/18


March 5, 2018

Dear EGRPS Families,

This letter is a follow-up to the information you received on Friday, February 9, 2018, and Wednesday, February 14, regarding our district investigation involving high school teacher and track/cross-country coach, Mr. Nick Hopkins. As I shared in my previous letter, I have pledged to be as transparent as possible in order to assure our students are educated in a safe and orderly learning environment in and out of the classroom.

In early February 2018, specific information was provided to my office which indicated alleged inappropriate conduct by Mr. Hopkins involving former students. Pursuant to Board of Education policy and procedure, and to ensure the integrity of the investigation, Mr. Hopkins was placed on an administrative leave of absence. Throughout the entire process, the district investigation was conducted by a team consisting of East Grand Rapids Public Schools (EGRPS) administrators and legal counsel representatives from Clark Hill PLC. On Friday, March 2, 2018, Mr. Hopkins voluntarily resigned from the district effective immediately; henceforth, he will no longer be affiliated with EGRPS in any capacity. Although, the district’s internal investigation has been completed, the City of East Grand Rapids Department of Public Safety (EGRDPS) investigation is ongoing; questions about their investigation should be directed to EGRDPS. As superintendent, I am committed to holding all district staff; teachers, support staff, and administrators, to high standards of professionalism and ethical conduct. Whenever allegations indicate that these standards are breached by any staff member, we will promptly investigate and take appropriate corrective action up to and including dismissal. When appropriate, we refer concerns to law enforcement and fully cooperate with the authorities. Our internal investigation is independent from law enforcement activity, which makes its own determination based on its separate review.

The Board of Education’s policies and protocols are in place to protect all of our students and staff. These policies are strictly enforced, and protocols are followed when concerns are brought to our attention. The District’s Title IX policy and guidelines can be found here or on our website. Again, we ask that you speak with your children and make them aware of the importance of immediately reporting potential inappropriate conduct to their teacher and/or principal.

In closing, I want to assure you that the EGRPS administration, staff, and Board of Education continue to be committed to upholding the academic and extra-curricular excellence our students deserve. If you have any questions regarding the district’s investigation, please feel free to contact my office directly at 616-235-3535. Thank you for your ongoing support of EGRPS.

Sincerely,

Sara Magaña Shubel, Ph.D.
Superintendent

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Letter from Dr. Shubel 3/5/18