FORTVILLE — A middle school principal facing a criminal charge amid allegations he failed to report child abuse has changed jobs within the Mt. Vernon School Corp.
The change moves Mt. Vernon Middle School principal Scott Shipley from the middle school building, where he had overseen students and staff since 2014, to a newly created position in the administration building as the corporation’s director of special programs.
Superintendent Shane Robbins announced Shipley’s new position Friday in a district newsletter, noting the change is effective after the district’s fall break, which began Monday and runs through Oct. 16.
Assistant principal Ben Williams will serve as interim principal, the newsletter states.
In his new position, Shipley will be responsible for the “initiation, coordination, development and evaluation of the special programs curriculum, instruction and assessment,” the newsletter states.
Shipley will serve as the corporation test coordinator, give additional oversight to the district’s alternative school and help establish onsite adult learning opportunities among other district-wide responsibilities, Robbins said in an email to the Daily Reporter. He’ll also focus on expanding vocational and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) offerings at the high school.
The position is newly created, school officials said, and the move is not a promotion, Robbins said. Shipley will continue to earn the same salary, about $90,000.
In an email to the Daily Reporter, Robbins did not answer a question about whether moving Shipley from the middle school to the administration building is related to Shipley’s pending criminal case. Robbins could not be reached for additional comment by press time.
Shipley, who has been employed by the district for more than a decade, came under fire last spring after police accused him of failing to report allegations a Mt. Vernon student had been sexually assaulted by a teacher’s aide formerly employed by the district.
Prosecutors say Shipley waited 17 days to share information about potential misbehavior by his employee, Kisha Nuckols, who awaits sentencing on a plea deal of one count of Level 5 felony child seduction and has been fired from the district. Shipley told a colleague about the rumors; he never made a report to police, court documents state.
State law requires anyone who believes a child is being abused or neglected to report those suspicions to police or the Indiana Department of Child Services.
Shipley, who faces a misdemeanor charge of failure to report, was not arrested and continued to oversee staff and students at the middle school after he was charged. After prosecutors filed the case, Robbins said the district would await the outcome of the court proceedings before making a decision about Shipley’s future with the district.
Shipley returns to court for a hearing Oct. 14, court records show. A trial date has been set for Dec. 20.