Park Hill School Board Member Explains Resignation
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Fred Sanchez has served on Park Hill’s Board of Education for about seven years, and he says he’s committed to education in the metro – and that’s why he decided he had to resign.
Sanchez said he made an honest mistake when he brought a concealed weapon to a board meeting – but in the district’s no tolerance policy, mistakes like his wouldn’t be tolerated for students, so he said his decision to leave was an ethical one.
Students in the Park Hill School District are important to Fred Sanchez. It’s why he says he’s dedicated so many years to serving the district, but last week, he says he made a mistake.
“I had brought a weapon on school district property, with no criminal intent whatsoever,” Sanchez explained.
Sanchez says he was in a hurry to get to the school board meeting, and since he’s licensed to carry a concealed weapon, his gun was with him.
“I inadvertently forgot that I had it with me, it was pointed out to me, I immediately addressed the situation, went to the car, got rid of it, locked it up,” said Sanchez.
Park Hill’s School District has a policy that weapons are prohibited on district grounds. Liberty, Lee’s Summit, Blue Springs, West Platte, and Kansas City, Mo. school districts have similar policies.
For Fred Sanchez, his decision was made when he considered other no-tolerance related issues he’s ruled on in the past.
“Being one of seven that oversaw situations of good kids, scholastic achievers, that were basically for lack of another word, stupid for a day, forgetful,” Sanchez said.
Sanchez says he feels he’d be a hypocrite if he stayed on the board, and he tells students this is an opportunity to learn.
“If there was one last thing that I could say to the children of the district, is I am with you, be safe, and learn from my experience,” he said.
A Park Hill School District representative says Sanchez was not asked to leave. It was his decision. Sanchez backs that up saying leaving was his decision, and it was a tough one to make.
Sanchez’s permanent replacement will be chosen by vote in April.
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