Oakwood principal confirms he's been suspended

Oakwood principal confirms he's been suspended

OAKWOOD — The Oakwood Junior High School principal on Monday confirmed that he was removed from his job earlier this month.

"I've been suspended with pay," Sam Erwin said during a brief phone conversation.

Erwin said he was suspended on April 18. He declined to say why he was suspended or whether he planned to fight any charges that led to his suspension.

"I think it's best if I just didn't say anything at this time," said Erwin, who has an attorney.

Officials with the Vermilion County Sheriff's Department said they were aware of Erwin's suspension, but there is no criminal investigation regarding the matter.

Oakwood schools Superintendent Karen Perry and school board President Greg Wolfe called it a personnel matter. Wolfe declined to elaborate on the advice of the board's attorney.

"We cannot make any comment," Wolfe said, adding the school is being overseen in the meantime by Perry and a lead teacher.

When Perry was asked whether the matter involved a student, she said, "There is no danger. There is no criminal anything. ... There is no (Illinois Department of Children and Family Services) investigation."

Perry also said it hasn't been determined yet whether Erwin will be fired or allowed to return to his post at some point.

Erwin has held the position since 2009. Prior to working in Oakwood, he served as principal of Hardin County Elementary School and assistant principal of Hardin County High School in Elizabethtown.

Erwin taught eighth-grade social studies at Massac Junior High School in Metropolis for four years, and coached football for the local high school for two years before moving to the Hardin County school district.

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