Shakopee principal faces allegations

  • Article by: Star Tribune
  • Updated: June 30, 2010 - 8:21 PM

The school board will meet privately to consider allegations against the high school principal. His former aide is accused of theft.

Shakopee school board members will meet privately Tuesday to discuss allegations against long-time high school Principal Jim Murphy that may be linked to an alleged theft by one of his employees.

Board members met in closed session on Monday to discuss an investigation into the theft of more than $168,000 from the high school's student activity account. Murphy's former assistant, Deanna Stanius, is accused of taking the money over three years to fuel a gambling habit. She resigned in April and was charged a month later with six counts of felony theft by swindle.

After Monday's meeting with a school district attorney, board Chairman Chuck Berg immediately called for the special closed-door session of the board on Tuesday to discuss allegations against Murphy and possible discipline. Berg said he can't discuss those allegations because of data privacy laws but said they are not criminal.

"Obviously, we're concerned about the theft," Berg said. "It's true we're concerned about how it happened without anyone noticing. ... We want to be sure we can prevent this from happening again."

Murphy has been the Shakopee High School principal since 1989 and has not had any disciplinary action against him during that time, Berg said.

District Superintendent Jon McBroom said he couldn't comment on the allegations against Murphy. The principal has not been placed on leave, McBroom said.

Murphy was at work Wednesday, according to an employee at the school. He could not be reached for comment.

SARAH LEMAGIE AND MARY LYNN SMITH

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