SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - San Marcos High School Principal Ed Behrens was demoted and reassigned to a teaching position at the end of the school year following an emotional and heated Special Board meeting Tuesday night.
The turn-out and groundswell of support was expected to be so large, the venue was moved from the Santa Barbara Unified School District to the Marjorie Luke Theatre at Santa Barbara Junior High School.
The decision to demote Behrens was not unanimous; it was a 4 to 1 vote with Board Member Laura Capps as the sole dissenter.
The move came after a series of school threats and a firecracker scare at San Marcos High School -- all in a span of seven weeks.
The Santa Barbara Unified School District called it a "personnel matter" and before Tuesday's Special Board meeting, would neither confirm nor deny that Behrens would be demoted to a teaching position at the end of the school year. The District released a statement that read in part: "Principals ... are subject to release or reassignment every year."
"Which we think is crazy!" said Chris Gallo, a parent. "Ed's done terrific at San Marcos, a very high performing school."
"I feel bad for him but I'm not surprised," said Sabrina Kranz, a parent.