BRADENTON -- A parent who settled a lawsuit with the Manatee County School Board for $210,000 now wants to be released from some terms of the settlement.
In a three-page handwritten note to the Manatee County School Board, Superintendent Diana Greene and the district legal staff, Alice Kaddatz writes she has been afraid to speak publicly in case she "may overstep some invisible line and find myself back in the middle of legal action with the school district."
Kaddatz and her daughter sued the school district after the daughter accused staff
at Manatee High School of misconduct.
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In her letter, Kaddatz references a school board meeting in which board vice chairman Charlie Kennedy asked the audience to quiet down, saying if members of the public wanted to speak they could sign up for the public comment portion of a meeting.
"I cannot comfortably stand up and speak for three minutes on any topic," Kaddatz told the Bradenton Herald on Wednesday. She fears she would violate the settlement and set herself up to be sued by the district. The letter, dated Jan. 28, is on the school board agenda for Tuesday.
Kaddatz said she is just asking to be released from the settlement, and her request does not include her daughter.
In August, the school board and the mother and daughter reached a settlement, in which the board agreed to pay $210,000, including $10,000 spelled out directly for the mother's claim and the rest set aside for the student's claim.
The student involved brought complaints about Roderick Frazier, a former coach and parent liaison, to Manatee High School's attention and subsequently the district. In the lawsuit, the student and Kaddatz blame the district for Frazier's actions.
Frazier pleaded no contest in April 2014 to four misdemeanor battery counts and two counts of interfering with school attendance. As part of the plea deal worked out with the State Attorney's Office, prosecutors dropped four battery charges.
Meghin Delaney, education reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7081. Follow her on Twitter @MeghinDelaney.