District stands behind principal

Officials say they have set 'clear expectations' following DUII charge

The principal of Reynolds High School is facing up to one year in jail and $6,250 in fines after being charged with drunken driving and second-degree criminal mischief this week.

The Clackamas County District Attorney's office charged Kevin Kannier, principal of Reynolds High since January 2005, with DUI and second-degree criminal mischief Tuesday, June 13. Officials said the charges, both misdemeanors, stem from a traffic incident that occurred Sunday, May 14, in Sandy, off Highway 24. The criminal mischief charge is related to damage Kannier allegedly caused to another vehicle.

Police say the 53-year-old principal's blood alcohol level was .21 at the time of the incident. The legal limit in Oregon is .08. According to one resource on blood alcohol levels, .15 is the equivalent of half a pint of whiskey circulating in the blood stream. At .25, most people are no longer able to walk and often lose consciousness.

Officials at Reynolds School District say Kannier is still employed as principal at Reynolds, but that the district 'is taking this very seriously.'

'There has been no disciplinary action in terms of continuation of employment … but the district has taken it very seriously,' said Wayne Travillion, director of human resources for the district. 'Some students and parents have found out and one of the concerns we have, of course, is what kind of example this sets for students. However, some parents have pointed out the other example that we also need to show kids you don't jump to conclusions and that you stand by people when they're in trouble.'

Kannier has been with the district for more than 25 years and has been in a leadership position with Reynolds High for more than a decade. He was promoted from assistant principal to principal halfway through the 2004-05 school year and has shown great potential in his new position, Travillion said.

In a letter released Thursday, June 15, Reynolds Superintendent Terry Kneisler said he had met with Kannier and 'set out very clear expectations that must be met.'

'Mr. Kannier has apologized to the school district and to his staff. The school board and I have high confidence in Mr. Kannier's ability to lead our high school and do not anticipate any repeat occurrence,' Kneisler said.