KINGMAN - Despite several emotional pleas from students and parents, the Kingman Unified School District Board accepted Lee Williams Principal Steven Elwood's letter of resignation Tuesday night.
"He's earned the right to be our principal for another year," said student Isaac Hanson.
"He earned our respect. He makes an attempt to listen to students and motivates us toward success," said student Marissa Young. "To him, our opinions matter."
Parent Jeff Adams said he circulated a petition asking the board to reject Elwood's resignation. At least one-third of the students and a quarter of the parents signed it, he said.
Jeff Adams said it was not in the best interests of students or taxpayers to accept Elwood's resignation.
"Ten out of 12 teachers at that school have confidence in him," he said. "He's had remarkable results with the students. There's only three students that currently fall in the lowest (academic) level out of 237 students and there's room to grow."
Superintendent Roger Jacks was contacted before the meeting about Elwood's resignation and said state law prevented him from discussing personnel matters.
Parent Rosemary Adams said, "We had a lot of bumps at the beginning and there's a lot of blame to go around, but my daughter loves that school. It feels like a community to her. I've seen Mr. Elwood work with students. I've seen him advocate for his staff. He's a very caring individual."
Bonnie Flores, another parent, pleaded with the school board to set up a private meeting between them and Elwood to discuss the matter.
"Things are not quite the way they seem," she said.
Another parent, Kelly Shuffler, said, "My son was suspended for something he did, but I spoke with Mr. Elwood and I think his decision was fair."
The board listened to the comments from students and parents but did not discuss Elwood's resignation before approving it as part of its consent agenda.
Attempts to contact Elwood on Wednesday were unsuccessful.