MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

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By edhat staff

Santa Barbara High School's MAD Academy Director will return from administrative leave for the remainder of the year and then will retire following an internal investigation.

The Multimedia Arts & Design (MAD) program has been led by longtime Director Dan Williams until he was placed on leave last month pending an investigation.

Dan Williams (Photo: MAD)

In an email sent to MAD students and families on Wednesday, Santa Barbara High School Principal Elise Simmons stated the Santa Barbara Unified School District and Williams came to an "amicable agreement." Williams will return to work on Thursday, May 2 until June 7.

"Mr. Williams will retire from District employment on June 30, 2019. We thank Mr. Williams for his years of service to the district," wrote Simmons.

Simmons stated the investigation is a confidential personnel matter but confirms it was not a criminal investigation, reports KEYT.

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a-1563720619 May 03, 2019 05:36 PM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

Full benefits and pension. I really hope that it is not true he was boozing it up with students, taki g trips with them, and/or "rassled" with them while shirtless and drunk.

Flicka May 03, 2019 09:24 AM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

"Kind of inappropriate but not criminal", is an interesting take on the article. If, in fact, he actually allowed teenagers to drink liquor at his house parties I believe giving minors alcohol is unlawful, i.e. criminal.

a-1563720619 May 03, 2019 07:12 AM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

I have heard from multiple MAD academy male students over the last few years that he cultivated friendships with some of them outside of school. Going out to dinner, parties at his house where they allowed to drink, trips to Costa Rica where he pointed out the drinking age is 16 and then allowing it, late night attempted “wrestling” sessions etc. I think he is lucky this is all that’s happening. Not sure why someone would down vote my previous post of same info. The truth will get out.

a-1563720619 May 03, 2019 11:55 PM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

Peter Pan syndrome is a man who never grows up. That’s not the issue here. This is a man who apparently used his position for opportunistic and nefarious means if this is true which it appears to be.

a-1563720619 May 02, 2019 03:39 PM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

I can only tell you what I have heard over the years from quite a few of the MAD academy male students who Dan befriended in an off campus way. Taking them to dinners, having parties at his house where alcohol was allowed, on trips to Costa Rica telling the kids as young as 16 that that was the drinking age and allowing alcohol consumption, late night “wrestling” sessions when he was apparently drinking as well. The stories I have heard would curl anyone’s hair. He’s lucky this is all that’s happening.

a-1563720619 May 02, 2019 03:08 PM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

I used to know Dan, not to say we were best friends or anything like that, but for many years we crossed paths quite frequently in a professional setting and we'd run into each other around town. I changed career paths quite a few years back, haven't really seen him in a long time, have no clue what he's been up to or what's going on. Hard for me to imagine him doing something nefarious, I remember him as a good guy, a good teacher, one who cared for his students and worked hard. Details on this will come out eventually, they always do, I just hope the guy I used to know isn't on the wrong side of the facts.

a-1563720619 May 02, 2019 02:30 PM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

I agree, 2399, that somebody here has to be "in the know" and can provide the actual skinny. Nobody is under oath & the school district has no sway over comments on EdHat.

a-1563720619 May 02, 2019 01:45 PM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

I had a bully of a teacher at Roosevelt Elementary, grade 5. Learned a lot from that teacher, but still remember how she called one of my fellow students (in front of the entire class) "a rotten apple." One has to strive to see that their kids are raised so that, young or old, they have self-confidence and comprehend that they will be subjected to all manner of adults throughout their lives, bullies and otherwise.

Soccer-Fan May 02, 2019 01:33 PM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

One could assume this talented and popular man man has been falsely accused of certain actions. The resulting shock being the need for a lot of TLC and rest. False accusations, and assumptions from amateur detective know it alls has caused many a nervous breakdown with associated health problems. Really hope he can sue for this cruelty.

a-1563720619 May 02, 2019 03:48 PM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

This has been a LONG time coming and from the sound of it the school district has not uncovered the half of it, or possibly they have and don’t want the MAD Academy to go down in flames. He created the perfect environment for his predatory behavior.

a-1563720619 May 02, 2019 07:24 AM
MAD Academy Director to Retire After Investigation

What’s the scoop on this outstanding program Williams built which has focused to launch many students? He’s made an exceptional contribution to SBHS programmatically. Alum comments positive. There’s too much gossip from sex and drugs to preferential treatment of students from mined families who are needed to keep the program operational and go buy the essential expensive media equipment. SBUnified gave him little to no support. What’s the real story Students and parents?

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