Media Archive

Father, PVHS faculty speak out regarding alleged assault at school

Article from The Piscataquis Observer, Vol. 165, No. 17, April 23, 2003

To the editor,

This letter is in reference to last week's article, "Fight at PVHS under nvestigation." I'm the father of Ricki, the 16-year-old who was punched in the face during the altercation. The fight started when someone attacked my son from behind.

Principal John Robinson proceeded to break the scuffle up. Ricki spat at the other student and it hit the principal. I believe Principal Robinson lost control of himself and struck out. Many students saw Robinson's reaction and wrote statements.

The Milo Police did not arrest anybody because "they did not witness the assault."

Channel 5 News came to us to get an interview because they were getting swamped with emails and phone calls from parents angered about the incident.

I send my kids to school thinking they should be safe. I don't know what will happen in this case. What I do know is my son will never attend PVHS again. We have pulled him from attending that school. My son is a
good kid, has good grades and his friends and relatives will verify that. He is no angel, by any means. He or any other school kid anywhere does not deserve to be struck by an adult. No matter what the circumstances.

Rick Eastman Sr.

To the editor:

We are writing this letter in support of our principal, John Robinson, who was in the news recently for an "alleged assault" of a student at Penquis Valley High School.

In understanding the nature of the media, we acknowledge that "Man Bites Dog" makes for an interesting story. However, we are disappointed in what we consider to be unfair coverage of this affair by two local TV
stations and at least one local newspaper. It is particularly unfair to a man who has given 32 years to education and has never been remotely accused of inappropriate conduct.

Credibility is earned; it is not a right. A little leg-work by the news media would have thrown into question the credibility of one of the participants and provided a more balanced presentation of the facts. John Robinson treats students fairly and with compassion.

It is impossible to "un-ring a bell" once it is heard. We fully support Mr. Robinson in this difficult personal and professional time. We also challenge the news media to return to Penquis Valley once this incident has
been resolved and to cover the resolution with the same zeal that it recently demonstrated. We'll be waiting, but we suspend that restoring a person's good name isn't quite as interesting as destroying it.

Tony Hamlin and 37 other PVHS faculty and staff members

NOTE - This article reflects the views of the author and not necessarily those of the TRC Alliance Team.