The Public Relations Chairperson of the Ambridge Area School District resigned from her committee at Thursday night’s board meeting.
Terry Mylan will continue in her capacity as a board member but will no longer oversee the committee in charge of community engagement for the district.
“I will be looking for volunteers from the rest of the board to take over that committee for us going forward,” Board President Scott Angus announced during the meeting.
Mylan told BeaverCountian.com after the meeting that she resigned for “personal reasons.” She declined to elaborate further.
Mylan’s resignation came just three days after BeaverCountian.com received an email from the district threatening legal action if it did not delete a photograph it had published of the school’s insignia. The image was included as part of an article about the tasing of a juvenile by police after a Sept. 13 high school football game.
Shari Berg, who serves as public relations consultant for the district under a contract with Communication Solutions Group, sent Monday’s legal threat on behalf of Superintendent Joan Welter.
“Policy 920 limits the use or reproduction of the AASD formal insignia by any groups or individuals within or outside of the District without specific prior School Board approval, which you did not obtain,” Berg wrote.
“Failure to remove our logo from your article will result in the District taking all necessary steps to protect its property, including legal action, if necessary.”
BeaverCountian.com sent a lengthy response in reply to the email.
“Unlike others your district has attempted to bully, (we) think you will find we are well educated about our legal rights including the Supreme Court’s adoption of a fair use doctrine in protection of the First Amendment, as applicable in this instance,” the reply read in part.
The site has since republished the image another 20 times.
According to the district’s website, Mylan established the Public Relations Committee in Jan. 2016 with the expressed intent of developing “goals and a strategy to increase communication, information and overall knowledge” about the school.
Mylan noted at the time that “community engagement is critical to educational success.”