Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Parents Divided over Drinking by Collinsville School Principal

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Parents Divided over Drinking by Collinsville School Principal

Article excerpt

While the pupils at Webster School in Collinsville deal with the standard challenges of grade school, their parents deal with a new one: The principal has been suspended for having alcohol in his bloodstream at work.

Some are behind him. Some are not. Some are still deciding.

Most everyone seems to agree, however, that the situation involving principal Fred Bloss is difficult.

NOTE: The following paragraph appeared only in the FIFE STAR LIFT edition:

Bloss, an educator in the district for 25 years, declined to comment. His wife, reached at home Saturday, said: "If someone would write a whole profile of his life as principal, it would be all positive." She said many people were writing or calling. "People are sad this is happening, and they're well-wishers. They are writing, `We support you 100 percent.' " (End of addition.)

Some parents and an employee interviewed agreed. Some parents said they wanted to see Bloss get treatment and stay, but others said they wanted to see him removed as principal of the old brick school on Church Street in downtown Collinsville.

Tracy Matikitis, who has a third-grade son at the school, said: "There are rules at school - no drugs, no alcohol, no guns. I don't think he should be principal if he can't abide by the rules the children do."

Two sisters, Rose Vogler and Wanda Vogler, were picking up their children at the school Friday afternoon.

"I don't think it's right - him drinking and coming to school," Rose Vogler said.

Wanda Vogler said: "I'm a parent, and I don't drink in front of my kids. Why should someone else do it? I don't think it's cool at all. It's not good for our children."

But Debi Walker said that she has three children at Webster and that they like Bloss.

"I'm supporting Dr. Bloss," she said Friday as she walked into school with her arms loaded with Easter party favors and cupcakes for first-graders. …

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