There were warning signs that a Metro teacher was having trouble months before he was charged for possession of methamphetamine.
Stephen Henry, 55, was arrested June 13 in Robertson County.
According to Henry’s personnel file, while he was teaching at Dan Mills Elementary School in 2017, nine parents complained to the principal about him.
The complaints were about Henry’s behavior. The parents said he wasn’t teaching fourth-grade math to his students and instead let them watch YouTube videos and allowed chaos in his classroom.
Henry was transferred from Dan Mills to Johnson Alternative Learning Center on September 11, 2017.
The reason listed on his transfer form says “budget cuts.” After News 2 asked multiple questions about this, a school spokesperson confirmed the real reason for the transfer was because of the parent complaints.
Johnson ALC is for Metro students who might otherwise be expelled from school because of their behavior.
Juvenile Court Judge Sheila Calloway wrote a letter to Metro’s Chief Academic Officer, Dr. Monique Felder, last year about concerns she had about Johnson.
News 2 told her Stephen Henry had been transferred to Johnson after he was reported for bad behavior at Dan Mills.
“What it says to me is that the school says we have these problem teachers let’s just send them to the school that has the problem children,” she told News 2. “It’s that population of youth that you want to have some of your best teachers working because they are at that point where they can be rehabilitated, they can be changed.”
Calloway said some of the concerns she addressed in her letter have been addressed but there is still a lot of progress that needs to be made.
MNPS spokesperson Dawn Rutledge said in a statement that she believes the error on the transfer form was a human mistake but that the school system is investigating what happened.
She also said Mr. Henry was transferred to Johnson because there was an opening there that fit his certification level.