December 21, 1996 in Idaho

Embattled Principal At Riggins Quits

Associated Press

Salmon River Principal Winnie Ainsworth has resigned after a brief, turbulent tenure.

“My resignation has been tendered in an effort to reduce the contention at Riggins, which has developed during the last five years,” Ainsworth wrote in a prepared statement Thursday.

She has been principal of the local schools only since August 1995. Her resignation is effective at the end of the school year.

Before her arrival the previous principal, Joe Anderson, who spent 25 years in Riggins, also was the focus of a community drive to get rid of him.

Ainsworth, who worked as vice principal and disciplinarian at a school of about 1,100 students in Longview, Wash., before coming to Idaho, has said she was unaware of the problems when she was hired.

Ainsworth has been the target of verbal attacks and harassment by a few locals. Earlier this year, more than 200 parents signed a petition urging trustees not to renew her contract, which they did anyway.

In April, 81 students staged a sit-in in front of her office for nearly two hours, protesting her decision to conduct graduation exercises in the multipurpose room rather than the gymnasium.

© Copyright 1996 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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