Petition started to remove Bedford school board member Todd Bruning

BEDFORD TOWNSHIP, Mich. – A petition and a Facebook group has been started with the goal of recalling Todd Bruning from his position with the Bedford Township School Board.

The petition alleges that Bruning, “amplifies racist, misogynistic, dangerous and hateful rhetoric.”

According to WNWO, Stephanie McLain started the petition because she was appalled by Todd Bruning’s posts to social media.

“It’s going to be to try and get her attention, the Lt. Governor’s attention, and I hope the Attorney General can offer some help here. It’s just really about putting a giant spotlight on Bedford right now,” McLain told WNWO.

Bruning told WTOL on Monday that if he were to be recalled, “it wouldn’t bother me one way or the other. I mean, it’s not like a school board position is a high paying job or anything else like that.”

According to WNWO, Bruning stated that whatever salary he gets, he gives back to the school.

“All this is is just another batch of snowflakes. This has already happened before and Carl had to deal with it. Now, it’s just another new batch of snowflakes, upset about memes,” Bruning told WNWO.

As of 10:20 p.m. on Friday, more than 5,700 people had signed the petition. The petition organizers have a goal of 7,500 signatures.

The Bedford Public Schools Superintendent Carl Shultz made a comment on the school’s Facebook page regarding the situation on June 5.

"I have received countless emails and communications this week regarding the social media communications of one of our elected Board of Education Members. I am providing the statement (included below) regarding Board Member positions and roles within the district. Please feel free to share this information with anyone that you see as appropriate.

The Bedford Community is an amazing place and I fully support any effort to continue to grow! Thank you for all of your support and for being a proud Kicking Mule!"

Below is the statement regarding board member election:

"The 7 Members of the Bedford Public Schools Board of Education are elected by the School District’s local constituents. The Bedford Public Schools’ Board of Education is responsible for the governance of the School District and are not paid employees of the district. The role of district governance includes authorizing financial decisions, maintaining district governing policies, and selecting a School Superintendent. The School District’s Superintendent is hired by the Board to run the day-to-day operations and to implement Policies adopted by the Board. The Board Members terms are established by statute, and neither the Board nor the Superintendent has the authority to remove a Board Member from the Board of Education.

Board Members may only be removed pursuant to applicable provisions in the law. Section 1107 of the Revised School Code states that the Governor may remove a school board member. The Governor can only remove a school board member if the governor is satisfied from the evidence submitted to the governor that the member is guilty of gross neglect of duty, corrupt conduct in office, or any other misfeasance or malfeasance in office. In addition, the Michigan Constitution provides procedures for the public to recall a school board member. There is nothing in the law that provides procedures for a school board itself, or any employee of the school board, to remove a board member.

Bedford Public School Board members only speak on behalf of the District through formal action at public School Board meetings. The Board President and the Superintendent are the only designated spokespersons for the Board. Individual Board Members maintain their First Amendment Rights to speak on matters in their individual capacity and do not speak on behalf of the Board. In addition, as elected representatives are not subject to district disciplinary polices. The Bedford Public Schools Board of Education does not endorse any statements made by individual Board Members."

About the Author:

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.