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Kaskaskia College Fires Professor

By Bruce Kropp, WJBD News

The Kaskaskia College Board has unanimously approved a resolution to dismiss Welding Professor Kevin Ray.  The decision came following a more than hour long closed session Monday night between the board and representatives of the Kaskaskia College and Illinois Federation of Teachers.   

About a dozen of Ray's students arrived after the closed session began.  After coming out of the closed session, the board agreed to allow them to speak.  Brandon Sheldon, who served as a spokesman for the group, said Ray's removal from his classes has caused the quality of their education to suffer substantially.  He said as paying students they feel they have been cheated out of their education for not only this semester, but quite possibly the entire two years or more they have invested into the program.  Those students signing the letter say most of them are in the program because of Mr. Ray and his reputation as a teacher.    

The board went into closed session to hear testimony on a complaint lodged against an employee to determine its validity.  Board Chair Bill Hawley told the students he was sorry they were being kept in the dark as to what happened, but the law prevented the board from sharing information on the complaint. 

Ray also served as chair of the welding program.   

College President Dr. Jim Underwood says no classes have been missed and Ray's classes have been taught by adjunct faculty members since his removal.  Dean George Evans is currently serving as the chair of welding program until a replacement is named.   Underwood says Ray has taught at the college since the late 90's.  

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