Kentucky Education Commissoner To Start Amid Controversy

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Kentucky's incoming education commissioner will be starting amid swirling controversy, including a police investigation at the school district she's leaving.

Barbara Erwin is set to retire Friday as superintendent of the Community Unit District 303 school system in Saint Charles, Ill., a western suburb of Chicago. She's scheduled to start in Kentucky on Monday.

Erwin said she does not know about the investigation into a missing personnel file at her old district. Erwin told reporters she had been out of the country and was unaware of the investigation.

"I have no idea what they're talking about," Erwin said Wednesday.

Paul McCurtain, a St. Charles Police Department spokesman, would not reveal whose personnel file was missing.

District 303 school board President Kathleen Hewell told the Kane County (Ill.) Chronicle the missing file was related to Erwin, but said officials were not sure whether "it has been misplaced or what."

Erwin was hired in May, despite questions about her resume and performance at past districts. She has a four-year pact with the Kentucky Board of Education, and both parties have a 90-day withdrawal clause. Chairman Keith Travis of the Kentucky board, said there are no plans to withdraw the contract.

Information from: Lexington Herald-Leader,

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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