Virginia Principal Fired, Offered Old Job Back Under Conditions

A Virginia principal who was under fire for writing a letter of recommendation for a band instructor accused of inappropriate conduct was officially fired Monday night by the school board.

John Brewer, the principal at Dominion High School in Loudoun County, Virginia, was terminated in December, but some parents, students, and teachers who supported Brewer lobbied for his restatement. However, the school board voted to uphold the termination Monday night.

The board did offer Brewer an opportunity to be rehired to his old job if he followed specific conditions. They said he would have to get special training on child abuse and neglect reporting, training on "appropriate and timely" communication to the administration and public information office, and be removed from all school clubhouse activities, a program for at-risk kids.

Brewer has 10 days to decide if he would accept the proposal. If he does, he would still be suspended without pay until Apr. 17.

Jackie Funk, a parent leaders of the group StandWithBrewer, said she has mixed feelings about the board's decision.  

"His positive impact on our students, faculty and community is immeasurable. With this decision, he now has the opportunity to come home," Funk said. "What has become crystal clear is that there are significant institutional problems within LCPS, and Dr. Williams must be held accountable for that." 

Brewer wrote a letter of recommendation for Brian Damron, a band instructor at Dominion who later took a teaching position in Florida and allegedly engaged in inappropriate sexual relations with students in Florida and boasted about having relationships with students in Loudoun County.

The Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office opened an investigation, but no charges have been filed. Brewer was criticized for writing the letter of recommendation, but it was never clear how much he knew of Damron’s alleged behavior.

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