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Trotwood board votes to not renew teacher’s contract after unsanctioned field trip

Published: Tuesday, April 17, 2018 @ 5:26 PM
Updated: Wednesday, April 18, 2018 @ 7:25 PM

VIDEO: Khaliah Forte speaks out at meeting, contract not renewed

UPDATED @ 8:40 p.m. (April 19)

Trotwood-Madison school board members voted to not renew the contract of a high school teacher who took 50 students on an unsanctioned field trip last month to a college campus.

More than 100 people showed up in support of Khaliah Forte, who addressed the board to defend her actions and to dispute that administrators said she wasn’t a fit in the building.

“I live in Trotwood. I go to church in Trotwood. I’m a part of this community, my kids attend Trotwood City Schools. we are this community. We participate in all we can in this district. I go to football games, basketball games, all sporting competitions’ signing days, inductions, every school board meeting and city council meeting,” Forte said. “When I walk into the building at 7:30 in the morning and I lay eyes on those kids, they all become my kids.”

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Board President Denise Moore said she couldn’t say anything specific about the nonrenewal because it was a personnel matter.

“It’s not about people, it’s not about positions, it’s not about personalities and it’s not about politics —  it’s about policy,” she said.

Trotwood teacher finds job in jeopardy after unapproved field trip

Moore said she wasn’t surprised so many parents, students and community members turned out in support of Forte.

“I think people came out because they care, people came out because they are engaged in the Trotwood-Madison City School District.”

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Parent Kalisha Smith, who said she helped to organize the trip, said there were no complaints from hotels or bus company used by the students. She said Forte provided an educational opportunity that has changed her youngest daughter for the better.

“No teacher deserves this trying to make something better for the students on her own personal time,” she said.

UPDATED @2:25 p.m. (April 19)

Trotwood-Madison school board officials on Thursday afternoon canceled their 5:30 p.m. special meeting, which had been scheduled “to investigate complaints against a public official.” 

The district’s regular school board meeting, scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m., will still take place.

EARLIER

Trotwood High School teacher Khalilah Forte is facing a possible termination for taking 50 students on a college visit in March that was not approved by the school.

The Trotwood City Schools board has called a special meeting to begin at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the district administrative offices, 3594 N. Snyder Road. The board will immediately go into executive session. 

According to documents from last week’s meeting, the board plans a vote Thursday on whether to non-renew Forte’s teaching contract, effective May 24, the day after students’ last day of school. 

This news organization has requested Forte’s personnel file, to examine any disciplinary documents related to the case.

Community leaders and parents say Forte was trying to help students who might not have a chance to experience a college visit. They also said parent and local organizations raised the money for the trip. 

Board member Norman Scearce said the trip was not taken on school time and the board will be voting Thursday on whether to terminate Forte. 

RELATED: See more trending stories on WHIO.com

The Rev. James Washington, pastor of Phillips Temple Church, said he knows Forte personally and that “She loves children, she loves the instruction of children and she loves what she does.” 

Washington also said Forte was just trying to help the children. 

According to the letter, which also was posted to social media, a Trotwood principal warned Forte she could lose her job if she took students on the unsanctioned trip.

Neither school district officials nor Principal David White would comment on the situation. Forte also said she was unable to comment. 

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Police find man with gunshot wound to the head in Dayton home

Published: Sunday, May 20, 2018 @ 6:13 AM
Updated: Sunday, May 20, 2018 @ 7:15 AM

UPDATE @ 7:15 a.m.:

A 38-year-old man was transported to a hospital with life-threatening injuries after police found him with a gunshot wound to the head in a home in Dayton, according to Sgt. Thomas Schloss of Dayton Police Department.

The man was found lying on the floor in the home on Brooklyn Avenue, Schloss said.

Homicide detectives were called out to the scene and are investigating, said Schloss.

It’s not known how the man was shot and his identity was not released.

FIRST REPORT:

Emergency crews are on scene of a shooting in Dayton.

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The shooting occurred in the 200 block of Brooklyn Avenue around 5:50 a.m. Sunday, according to initial reports.

Police have the road between West Second Street and Edison Street blocked off with crime tape.

We are working to learn more and will update this page as information becomes available.

More showers and storms likely to start the week

Published: Sunday, May 20, 2018 @ 4:50 AM

More showers and storms are likely through the weekend in the Dayton area.

The first part of your Sunday should be dry, but there is a slight chance for an isolated shower, according to Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Brett Collar. The better chances for more showers and storms returns for the second half of the day. Some of the storms towards evening could be strong to severe with the biggest concerns being strong winds and some hail. Highs today will be in the lower 80s.

WHIO Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

QUICK-LOOK FORECAST:

  • Few P.M. showers and storms today
  • Some could be strong with gusty winds, hail and heavy downpours
  • Dry time returns by Wednesday

DETAILED FORECAST:

5-Day Forecast

Monday: More showers and a few storms are likely to start the work-week. Highs will be in the upper 70s.

Tuesday: A few lingering showers, maybe a few storms are likely for the first part of your day. Highs will be in the lower 80s.

Cloudy with a chance of Podcast: A podcast for weather fans

Wednesday: It looks like we finally dry things out on Wednesday under partly cloudy skies. Highs again will be in the lower 80s.

Thursday: A little bit more sunshine returns for your day with highs in the lower 80s.

Two people ejected from motorcycle in Shelby Co. crash

Published: Sunday, May 06, 2018 @ 7:00 PM
Updated: Sunday, May 20, 2018 @ 4:25 AM

UPDATE @ 4:25 a.m. (May 20):

Michelle S. McNamara, 28, was listed in serious condition at Miami Valley Hospital after being ejected from a motorcycle in Loramie Twp. May 6.

The driver of the motorcycle, Stephen J. Vennemeyer, 52, was no longer listed as a patient at Wilson Memorial Hospital. His condition was not known.

FIRST REPORT:

Shelby County deputies and the Russia Fire Department responded to a single-vehicle motorcycle crash at the intersection of Russia Houston Road and Russia Rd. early Sunday morning. 

Stephen J. Vennemeyer, 52, and Michelle S. McNamara, 28, were ejected from a black 2016 Kawasaki motorcycle traveling eastbound in the 1000 block of Russia Houston around 12:18 a.m. 

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Vennemeyer over corrected when traveling off the right side of the roadway and then crashed. 

McNamara was transported by CareFlight to Miami Valley Hospital and is in critical condition. 

Vennemeyer was transported by rescue squad to Wilson Memorial Hospital 

The extent of Vennemeyer's injuries is unknown.

Abandoned car fire under investigation in Montgomery Co.

Published: Sunday, May 20, 2018 @ 2:32 AM
Updated: Sunday, May 20, 2018 @ 4:00 AM

UPDATE @ 4 a.m.:

An abandoned vehicle found fully engulfed in a gravel lot near the Great Miami River Recreational Trail is under investigation, according to Lt. Nick Carpenter of Bethel Twp. Fire Department.

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A call from a passerby came in around 2:10 a.m. that a Hyundai Veloster was on fire at Old Springfield Road at Old Canal Road.

Bethel Twp. fire along with Vandalia fire and Metro Park Police handled the incident.

Flames were able to be extinguished quickly and the vehicle was towed, according to Carpenter. 

FIRST REPORT:

Emergency crews are responding to a report of a vehicle fire in Vandalia Sunday morning.

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Initial reports state the vehicle is fully engulfed at Old Springfield Road and Old Canal Road.

It’s unknown if the vehicle is occupied at this time.