"Disrespect" charges dropped





NEW HAMPSHIRE — Charges brought against a high school student newspaper adviser accused of being disrespectful by school administrators because she supported student press freedom were dropped in mid-November.

Administrators contended that Lynda Bettcher, the student newspaper adviser at Portsmouth High School, was disrespectful when she gave the student-produced Paper Clip well-publicized support in their effort to publish a controversial editorial last June.

The editorial suggested that a teacher was unfairly suspended when he failed to report a relationship between a school employee and a student.

School officials filed a complaint against Bettcher for being out-of-line when she publicly helped to lead student protest against the censorship. In retaliation to the complaint, Bettcher filed a grievance with the district.

However, the administrators withdrew their motion against the Paper Clip adviser prior to a school board meeting Nov. 12, and Bettcher withdrew her grievance.

“We are pleased that we could resolve the issues related to the grievance to the satisfaction of all parties,” read a press release sent out by school officials before the meeting, as published in a local paper. “We look forward to the continued success of our distinguished student newspaper, The Paper Clip, and its advisor, Mrs. Bettcher.”


reports, Winter 1998-99