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Apr 5, 2016 10:30 PM

Frustrated parents confront Pembroke School Board about dean's quiet drug arrest

PEMBROKE - Pembroke Academy's dean of students is out of a job after she was arrested two months ago for allegedly having drugs on campus.

Parents who were hoping to find out why this was kept quiet didn't get the answers they were looking for Tuesday night at a Pembroke School Board meeting.

The board remained tight lipped about Rheka Luther, 36. Police said the former dean of students at Pembroke Academy was caught with heroin in her office and arrested two months ago - however the news just recently became public.

Parents said the school made a mistake by not informing them of what happened.

“Just not be given the basic facts, I think is the problem," said David Pearl, whose daughter is a sophomore at Pembroke Academy.

An email was sent to parents Monday saying - in part - that the issue is a personnel matter, and that the school followed protocol and felt there was not threat to students.

Parents strongly disagreed.

"I see heroin in the schools, needles and kids," said another concerned parent, Brian Murphy. "I don’t feel safe."

Parents voicing their concerns expected more.

"The purpose of the citizen’s comments is to get feedback from you,” said Chair of the Pembroke School Committee Tom Serafin. “They (comments) will be viewed and responses will be given in the future."

Parents asked the board for a more clear and definitive response to their concerns.

"None of the board wanted to talk,” said Jeanne Labarge. “I hope that the board responds, and I hope the board has an open investigation."

It's still unclear if the school will conduct its own investigation. There aren't clear protocols for this in the school handbook.

Luther was released on $10,000 bail and will appear in court Monday.

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