A secretary at Horace Mann Middle School is on paid leave, pending an investigation into the school's finances.
Jim Withrow, attorney for the Kanawha County Board of Education, confirmed that the department is investigating the school's financial transactions "over the last year or so" but declined to provide further information, calling the issue a personnel matter.
Pete Thaw, school board president, said he asked Withrow to look into the school's financial dealings after a handful of people familiar with Horace Mann had called him to express concerns.
"This person was turned in by their companions and by parents," he said.
In November, the employee was placed on paid leave, as is customary when a school employee is being investigated by the central office.
Typically, when an investigation is complete, Superintendent Ron Duerring will make a recommendation to the five-member Board of Education, and board members will vote on disciplinary action during a regular meeting.
Duerring would not discuss the case Thursday, citing "personnel matters."
Thaw said the practice of suspending employees suspected of wrongdoing with pay has long been a sticking point for the school board.
"We don't mind them being suspended with pay, but we don't think it should go on for too long," he said. "If you do something wrong and we put you on paid leave, that's just a vacation with pay."
This investigation - three months long so far - has to be "quite a long investigation," Thaw said.
"But some investigations take longer than a month. This one did."
Horace Mann Principal Jonathan Anderson, assistant principal Josh Stowers and Missy Ruddle, assistant superintendent for Kanawha County middle schools, all declined comment Thursday afternoon.
Stowers, a Democrat, represents Lincoln County in the House of Delegates and is vice chairman of the House Education Committee.
Contact writer Shay Maunz at shay.ma...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4886.