“He has also admitted to other questionable interactions with minors while he was a sitting school board member, as late as March of last year,” echoed Smith.
Hughes said Stolz did not close his Teenspot account until others found out about it and he realized it presented a potential risk to his political career.
Hughes said Stolz has tried to make jokes and poke fun at the situation. For example, a shirtless picture of himself was posted on Teenspot. Stolz recently wrote on his blog: “Why I ever thought a shirtless picture was a good idea, I'm not sure (Ew!)”
And he called Monday's school board meeting, where he knew people would call for his resignation, “a party.”
“We find this deeply disturbing and we are not laughing,” Hughes told the school board.
Justin Burkhardt of Salisbury Township, who said his cousins recently graduated from Emmaus High School, told the board Stolz had a second profile on the Teenspot website, which was terminated for improper behavior.
“Do not shake your head at me,” Burkhardt told Stolz. “Yet you said you were doing nothing wrong. I guarantee if the police would investigate this matter they would find something wrong. I hope the police investigate you (and) I hope you get the help you clearly need.”
Smith, who has three children in the district, doesn’t know if Stolz broke any laws, saying that is a matter for law enforcement and a court to determine. But she told the school board: “I am requesting that the superintendent ensure that a full investigation is conducted by whatever law enforcement agencies are appropriate.”
After the meeting, Stolz said if people have evidence that he has been involved in criminal activity, they should report it to the police.
Burkhardt called Stolz’s actions disgusting and immoral and called him a creep, pervert, monster and sexual predator.
He claimed Stolz had contact with a 13-year-old girl on Teenspot. “How is that acceptable at all?”
Burkhardt said the only positive to come from the controversy is that Stolz’s political career is over. “You’ll never hold office again, buddy, and for that I’m happy.”
Call for board action
Smith said East Penn School District has a policy of non-tolerance regarding improper conduct toward its students.
She said the board should vote to remove Stolz if he refuses to resign.
“His actions of pursuing a relationship with a minor were a gross neglect of his duties as a school board director,” said Smith. “And his actions show he is not morally capable of the judgment necessary to deal with sensitive matters regarding improper conduct with students.
“Having someone on the school board who thinks there is nothing wrong with an adult in authority dating a student can bring into question the entire school district’s ability to act in these matters.”
Smith said the school board may be exposed to lawsuits if Stolz remains on it and the board does nothing.
Stolz, a conservative Republican, calls himself “a bit of a lightning rod” on the school board who will continue to take strong stands. He considers himself an advocate for district taxpayers, but no friend of teachers unions.
Stolz frequently finds himself in bitter public arguments with the board president and vice president, also both Republicans. And, along with one or two like-minded colleagues, Stolz often is outvoted by the board majority.
None of the other eight school board members commented on demands that Stolz retire, or his response to those demands, during Monday’s meeting.
Action at next meeting?
What, if anything, the school board will do about Stolz may not be known until its next meeting on Oct. 28.
The school board president came to Monday’s meeting armed with a memorandum he wrote that states Pennsylvania has no legal mechanism to recall board members by voter request.
The memo states Pennsylvania’s constitution authorizes state courts to remove an elected official “upon criminal conviction of an infamous crime, misbehavior in office or reasonable cause.” Anyone who wants a school board member removed for those reasons must file a formal complaint with the state governor, attorney general or Senate. Or lawsuits could be filed in court.