Scottsdale Unified Governing Board

Groups for and against Jann-Michael Greenburg and his Scottsdale Unified Governing Board colleagues protested outside the board’s meeting venue last week.

The Scottsdale Police Department has cleared Scottsdale Unified Governing Board member Jann-Michael Greenburg of any criminal conduct in connection with a controversial dossier his father allegedly created on district critics.

The department in an announcement said the dossier “contained opensource and/or public documents” and that “therefore, it has been determined that no criminal conduct has been committed at this time that would be under the jurisdiction of the Scottsdale Police Department.

“The Scottsdale portion of this investigation is now closed,” the statement continued, adding detectives met with the FBI and state Attorney General’s office and “provided them with a copy of our investigation for review in determining if any criminal acts might fall under their respective jurisdictions.”  Detectives also briefed the Maricopa County Attorney.

The district “is still conducting an internal investigation based on its policies,” the statement added. SUSD is hiring an independent forensic investigator to ensure no district resources were improperly used to compile the dossier.

 The announcement came two days after the board’s regular meeting, at which calls for Greenburg to step down continued meeting amid competing rallies outside.

“I immediately call for your resignation,” said John Arnold, a 22-year resident of the city of Scottsdale. “You’ve brought national shame to our great city. You have betrayed the trust of the city … Mr. Greenburg, I ask that you do the right thing. Eliminate distractions so that this school board, community, our great teachers, our great students can get back to the business of being a world-class educational system. You maintaining your position on this board distracts from that.”

Emma Kate Bartels questioned Greenburg’s commitment to the community. 

“What is your vested interest in this community?” she asked. “I am genuinely curious. I want to know why you are still here, Jann-Michael Greenburg, because clearly you don’t care about children’s well being, not enough to let them breathe freely, not enough to let them feel safe from stalkers like you and your father … It is your job to be a positive advocate for students and you are failing. It’s time to step down.”

One woman went so far as to call Greenburg a “psychopathic cultural Marxist.”

“In what world is an unmarried, childless 28-year-old man who lives with his parents and grandparents a natural fit to sit on a school board such as this?” asked Lilly Standley, adding:

“In what world does an individual proven to be so incompetent as to share a link to parents of a dossier full of names, addresses, divorce proceedings, vacation home records, social security numbers, professional licenses and photos of 8-year-olds allowed anywhere near a school … the answer: the very world that psychopathic cultural Marxists like Jann-Michael Greenburg and his kind are allowed to create.”

Meanwhile outside the meeting room, two contingencies of protesters for and against Greenburg and the board in general vied for the attention of any passersby, many with signs advocating their positions.

“The public school district here in Scottsdale seems a little bit under fire recently,” said Shane Gledhill, one of the pro-board rally participants. 

“There seems to be a lot of people out here trying to follow an agenda to get rid of certain people,” Gledhill said. “We just want to show support for the public school system. I am product of the public school system. My kids are products of public schools and I feel that supporting our public schools is important. Funding them and supporting them.

“Personally I feel there are too many people coming out and trying to weaken the public schools and get rid of the public schools and I am a proponent of public schools and I want to show my support,” he continued. 

Much of the public rage stems from a secret dossier that Greenburg’s father apparently compiled and that Jann-Michael Greenburg had access too. According to those who have seen it, the dossier contained over 1,000 files on it, some with titles like “SUSD Wackos” and “The Crazies.”

The files, which were kept on a Google drive, contained Social Security numbers, people’s financial records, court documents like divorce records, students’ school files and pictures of students, according to those who have seen it.

Its existence came to light in August when Greenburg emailed Kim Stafford, the mother of a former SUSD student.

Stafford had contacted Greenburg via email regarding her desire to see schools remain open during the pandemic. During the back and forth of that conversation, Greenburg sent Stafford a screenshot with a link to the dossier, which was public to anybody with a link to it. It was made private later as more people became aware of it – and angered by it.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich asked the U.S. Justice Department to order an FBI investigation of Greenburg and the dossier. He has also asked the school governing board to meet with him to discuss the situation. 

That meeting has not yet been scheduled, SUSD spokeswoman Nancy Norman said.

During its Nov. 16 meeting, the board removed Greenburg as president and replaced him with board member Patty Beckman – who, along with board members Zach Lindsay and Libby-Hartwells, called for Greenburg’s resignation at that time.

But furor at the district has preceded the discovery of the dossier and people with disparate causes have been speaking out at school board meetings since the beginning of the year. Some parents have criticized the district’s mask mandate, which is set to end next month, and have railed against the governing board. 

Other parents have condemned what they see as Critical Race Theory in the district’s curriculum. 

Patricia Pellet created a website to recall the board members because of how her special needs child was treated at school. 

All those different factions were present at  the board’s meeting last week while new to the fray were parents who took exception with the anti-CRT crowd.

“I’m asking the school board to ignore the loud voices that are seeking to advance a Euro-centric, mythological, sanitized version of our history and instead do what you know is right,” said Lisa Olsen, a mother of five and former educator. “Listen to the expert educators and students who are demanding the truth be taught in our classrooms.