OKLAHOMA CITY — Two former teachers have alleged they were wrongfully fired from Epic Charter Schools because they resisted pressure to manipulate student enrollment.
Noelle Waller and Shauna Atchley filed lawsuits against Epic on Friday in Oklahoma County District Court, claiming they were fired after they refused to withdraw students who had poor academic performance. Waller taught in Pawnee County while Atchley taught in Pryor. They are requesting a judge award damages of at least $75,000.
Epic's Assistant Superintendent of Communications Shelly Hickman said Epic hasn't been served with any lawsuits yet.
"However, these are disgruntled former employees hoping to profit from what they perceive to be the issue of the day," Hickman said in a statement. "I cannot comment about personnel issues, but I can tell you that these employees are no longer employed with us, and for good reason.”
Both teachers said Epic encouraged them to drop students from their rosters to maximize potential bonuses, as first reported by Oklahoma Watch. Epic awards teacher bonuses for student retention, test scores, attendance and students’ ability to move on to the next grade level.