United South Central student Alyssa Drescher cries as she receives a hug from Wells resident Lisa Kibler after finding out she would be expelled for the rest of the school year. -- Sarah Stultz/Albert Lea Tribune
United South Central student Alyssa Drescher cries as she receives a hug from Wells resident Lisa Kibler after finding out she would be expelled for the rest of the school year. -- Sarah Stultz/Albert Lea Tribune

Archived Story

Area school board expels student for knife found in locker

Published 10:21am Friday, April 25, 2014
United South Central School liason officer Rick Herman shows the pocket knife retrieved from 17-year-old Alyssa Drescher's purse last week during a random drug search. -- Sarah Stultz/Albert Lea Tribune
United South Central School liaison officer Rick Herman shows the pocket knife retrieved from 17-year-old Alyssa Drescher’s purse last week during a random drug search. — Sarah Stultz/Albert Lea Tribune

WELLS — The United South Central school board voted unanimously Thursday to expel the 17-year-old girl who claims she mistakenly brought a pocket knife to school last week. The expulsion will last through the end of the school year. The decision, read by USC board Chairwoman Kathy Krebsbach, came after an expulsion hearing that lasted 3 1/2 hours, including testimony and closed deliberations. Alyssa Drescher, a junior, was facing an expulsion of up to 12 months for the knife, which was found after a random drug search at the school April 15. She said the knife was accidentally left in her purse after a day of cutting hay bales at her boyfriend’s home a few days prior. “The family and I are very disappointed with the decision to expel,” said the family’s lawyer Christopher Johnson. “We believe the punishment does not fit the alleged crime.”

Several people attending the expulsion hearing Thursday in support Alyssa Drescher wore shirts that stated, "Stop the Unfair Punishment." -- Sarah Stultz/Albert Lea Tribune
Several people attending the expulsion hearing Thursday in support Alyssa Drescher wore shirts that stated, “Stop the Unfair Punishment.” — Sarah Stultz/Albert Lea Tribune

Alyssa’s father, Rick, said the family would pursue legal action against the school district. “The fight’s not over,” he said. “The school district using excessive punishment has got to stop.” More than 50 people were at the hearing, many of who are Wells residents or students who protested in front of the school on Monday to show their support of Alyssa. “Parents have to start standing up,” said Lisa Kibler, who organized the protest. “They need to tell their stories too.”

Alyssa Drescher wipes away a tear Thursday night in the hallway of United South Central School after finding out she would be expelled for the rest of the school year. -- Sarah Stultz/Albert Lea Tribune
Alyssa Drescher wipes away a tear Thursday night in the hallway of United South Central School after finding out she would be expelled for the rest of the school year. — Sarah Stultz/Albert Lea Tribune

Superintendent Jerry Jensen, who testified at the hearing, said he thought the high school junior willfully violated the school’s weapons policy. He said the safety of all of the students in the school — including Drescher herself — was at risk. “Any weapon in school is a serious situation to me,” Jensen said. Krebsbach declined to comment. Look to the Tribune for more.   


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