In response to the letter by Michael Price (May 5, Herald Weekly) concerning Tim Riemer, managing director of Lake Norman Charter School.

Kudos to Michael Price for saying what many people are thinking concerning Tim Riemer and his bullying message sent to parents. As a parent of a Lake Norman Charter student and an 11-year former employee, I have seen the effect Mr. Riemer’s management style has had on the once-proud school. Lake Norman Charter School used to be the crown jewel of charter schools in all of North Carolina. Not only were we annually named School of Distinction by the state, students and teachers enjoyed every day. Under Mr. Riemer’s leadership, staff morale plummeted and parent complaints about the direction of the school became common.

I attribute most of the school’s current situation to Mr. Riemer’s “bullying” style of management. It is inconceivable that he would send a message about bullying when I can think of no greater example than himself. Teachers from the previous school, where he was principal (Lincoln Heights Elementary School), warned us of his arrogance and vindictiveness. They were right. Employees who question Mr. Riemer become ex-employees. Teachers are scared to talk to each other. Parents are wondering what happened to the great school they heard so much about. Students simply ask “Who is he?” since he rarely leaves his office. His fear tactics have made the working environment at the school toxic. And it is learning that suffers.

The good news is Lake Norman Charter School can be great again with the right leadership. For the sake of the students, let’s hope it happens.

Editor’s Note: In the 2008-09 and 2009-10, Lake Norman Charter School was awarded the Honor School of Excellent designation, meaning 90 percent of students were at grade level and the school made its Adequate Yearly Progress. Honor School of Excellence is the highest designation awarded to schools.

– Doug Hargett, Cornelius