ENID, Okla. (KFOR) – Officials with the Enid Public School District are addressing allegations from an Oklahoma teacher’s union.
The Oklahoma Education Association alleges that Enid administrators directed a former campus police chief to “hide acts of violent student conduct and student threats on multiple occasions, going so far as to demote him, then initiate termination proceedings,” a claim read.
The claim involves allegations from former campus police chief Mike Dods, who had been a police officer for 18 years and spent six years with the school district.
The documents state that it started on May 20, 2019 when Dods received a report of an Enid High School student who was threatening to harm multiple female students. The claim says a janitor became concerned when the student, who had a history of threatening behavior, began asking about how to bypass certain locks and access the roof.
At that point, Dods says he investigated the allegations and arrested the student. Felony charges were ultimately filed and the court issued a ‘no-contact’ order, which prohibited the suspect from coming into contact with the victims.
When the next school year began, Dods told school administrators that he thought the student was violating the ‘no-contact’ order.
According to the claim, the administrator told Dods that he was told not to arrest the student, adding that if he did, he would be fired.
In the end, Dods did report the violation to the Garfield County District Attorney’s Office. However, the claim says administrators told him that he needed to “get in line.”
On Oct. 19, the claim states that a child “whose family had close ties to the school administration” was threatening to kill staff and students. In that instance, Dods was told not to forward the information to the district attorney.
After going against orders and filing a report about that student, Dods says he was demoted and placed on a “plan of improvement.” He was ultimately fired.
“Officer Dods is facing unlawful retaliation for reporting violent student criminal conduct to law enforcement authorities at the Garfield County District Attorney’s Office. He did his job, abiding by his oath as a police officer and his statutory obligations. The prior demotion and present attempt to terminate his employment are clear acts of retaliation against Officer Dods by a school administration attempting to cover up violent student conduct, exposing the students and teachers of the district to ongoing danger,” the claim states.
News 4 reached out to Enid Public Schools and received the following statement:
“There is nothing more important to Enid Public Schools than the safety of our students and staff. It is our greatest priority, and we would never compromise it. Because this is a personnel matter, we are unable to discuss the specifics of the situation. The district has worked in every possible way to ensure all state and federal laws, as well as the district’s employment contract and policies, have been followed and will continue to be followed.
This morning, we received the correspondence/claim from Mr. Dod’s attorney that was released on social media yesterday. The district will grant his request for a due process hearing with the Board of Education, where thorough and accurate information about the district’s concerns can be shared as well. The notice letter to Mr. Dods setting out the cause and the underlying facts for his termination is a confidential document until the due process hearing; however, if Mr. Dods will sign a release, the district would be able to provide the notice letter to the media.
We will continue to partner and work closely with the Enid Police Department, who is assisting the district with school safety-related needs. We greatly appreciate their support of our students and our staff.”