Superintendent Communication

Superintendent Communication
Posted on 04/20/2023
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Dear Bellaire Community Member:

As some of you may know, I was recently a finalist for the Superintendent of the Edwardsburg Public Schools in southwest Michigan, having had my second interview on the evening of Tuesday, April 17. I was not selected for the role. The reason I was given was because of concerns regarding my “social media presence.”

Backing up several hours, I received a call from the consultant who ran the Superintendent search in Edwardsburg. He asked me, “Do you have a Twitter account?” Since I had a Twitter account, I told him that I did. The consultant indicated that some of the content in my Twitter feed was “problematic” for the Edwardsburg Board, and that he wanted to make me aware of that. Knowing what types of things I generally tweeted, retweeted and “liked,” I was a surprised by this statement, but I just assumed that something that I’d written hit a sour note.

I opened the Twitter app on my phone on the evening of Wednesday, April 19, and began scrolling through my feed. I very quickly identified several comments on, and “likes” of, other members’ tweets that I had not made, and – as I went deeper – I found a lot more. I tried to delete those items that I knew were not mine, but I couldn’t, so I got on my computer and attempted to log into Twitter. I found that my password did not work, and when I attempted to reset my password I learned that my email was not recognized. Contacting Twitter support, I was able to reset my password using my phone, as my phone number was in my profile.

Once I was able to access my account, I found a number of things that I had not written, retweeted or “liked,” so I started deleting them. Finally, after nearly an hour of this, I simply deactivated my account.

After that, I searched my name on the internet and found a blog operated by an individual in northern Indiana, near Edwardsburg, who had apparently found my compromised Twitter account and took screen shots of several posts. These ranged from mildly offensive to obscene, and none of them were things that I had tweeted, retweeted or “liked,” but which were still there. This is apparently what this blogger does. 

It quickly became apparent that my account had been hijacked at some point, though I couldn’t tell exactly when: some of the unrecognized tweets and other comments dated back to nearly a year ago. I also received an email from Twitter indicating that someone had attempted to access my Twitter feed from another state while I was trying to regain control of my account.

Once I realized what had happened, I contacted the district’s attorney and Board President Mike Robinson to provide updates on what was happening. After speaking with the other six Board members on Thursday April 20, the consensus was for me to document all of this information and produce a letter explaining the situation. It is my goal to maintain transparency with the community, so that’s why you’re receiving this letter today.

I apologize that this has been necessary, and I certainly hope that my explanation of what happened makes sense. I have worked here in Bellaire for nearly four years, and, while there are certainly issues that members of our community have disagreed with, I have always worked to maintain a relationship based on transparency, honesty and mutual respect.

Should you have any other questions, comments, or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me by email at [email protected], or call me at (231) 533-8015.


Mark J. Brenton, Superintendent/Secondary Principal