Board terminates employment of custodian

By Sarah Hawley -

RACINE — The Southern Local Board of Education terminated the employment of a school custodian during a special meeting on Thursday morning.

The board unanimously voted to terminate the employment of Jeremy Dill, effective immediately, on the recommendation of Supt. Tony Deem.

The board entered into executive session with Dill, along with union representative Jeff Beaver, to discuss the matter before voting on the termination resolution.

According to the resolution, “the Board believes that the performance and conduct of Jeremy Dill constitutes grounds for termination under such statute, and specifically finds that Mr. Dill has exhibited dishonesty, insubordination, neglect of duty, misfeasance and malfeasance, which constitutes just cause.”

A letter sent to Dill by Supt. Tony Deem dated April 30 states that the specific allegations against Dill include:

  • Dill was absent from work without leave February 21, 2018 and April 17, 2018 through April 30, 2018;
  • Dill failed to report to a meeting with Deem on April 30, 2018, after being directed to do so;
  • Dill was dishonest regarding the reason he was not able to work.

In a letter to the board members, Deem detailed the allegations against Dill.

According to the letter, Dill asked on Jan. 23 to use his vacation and sick time for Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) for his wife as he stated she was having an experimental treatment on her back. He stated he would be back to work on Feb. 20. On Feb. 20 Dill called off sick and did not return to work. At that time Dill was reportedly informed by Principal Tricia McNickle that he had 1.3 days of sick leave remaining. When Dill called off sick again on Feb. 21 it put him in a dock situation and not on approved leave.

A written reprimand was issued and Dill was told that he must be at work when not on approved leave. “He has a consistent history of running in to a dock situation,” Deem stated in the letter to the board.

On Feb. 22 Dill reportedly reported to McNickle that he had been shot in the foot, which is a second qualifying FMLA event. The two requests meant that he was allowed FMLA until April 17. He has been on unapproved leave since April 17.

“His original return to work date is 4/28/2018. I must have a release from a doctor stating that he is fit to return to work and I am still waiting on the conclusion of the sheriff’s investigation in to the shooting,” Deem stated. Dill was scheduled to bring the release and report to the district office on April 30, but reportedly did not do so.

“Numerous times he has been told to contact me by the Treasurer, Principal, and the three voicemails I left on his phone. He failed to do this,” concluded Deem.

By Sarah Hawley

Sarah Hawley is the managing editor of The Daily Sentinel.

Sarah Hawley is the managing editor of The Daily Sentinel.