Ankeny Teacher Arrested for Allegedly Drinking During School Hours

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ANKENY, Iowa – An elementary school teacher is accused of drinking during school hours.

Ankeny police say they found a six-pack of beer in 40-year-old Jennifer Rich's classroom. The kindergarten teacher at East Elementary was arrested on Friday after a concerned parent notified police.

"This occurred right before or during the regularly scheduled school parties that were happening surrounding the Valentine Holiday," said Jenifer Owenson, Chief Human Resources Officer for Ankeny Schools.

A preliminary breath test showed that Rich had been drinking. Officers found two empty beer cans, and four full cans, in her bag. They also noticed that she had bloodshot and watery eyes.

Authorities charged Rich with public intoxication and one count of child endangerment.

"After the teacher was brought to the police station and we were made aware of that, we put her on administrative leave," said Owenson.

Rich resigned from her position on Monday. She had been with the district since 2001. The Ankeny School Board will vote on her resignation at its meeting Monday night.

School officials say they are not aware that any student was put in an unsafe situation at any time. East's Principal called parents over the weekend to explain what happened.

19 comments

    • John Smith

      Oh, I see that the specified charges have changed. I guess “consumption” is harder to make a case for than I thought.

  • bjertbjaeger

    Yep, good ol booze, the safe drug promoted and subsidized by the state of Iowa and fully supported of course by drug dealers like Senator Rick Bertrand, making their living off a drug that costs Iowa almost $2 billion a year.

  • max

    Why do police always lie, “They also noticed that she had bloodshot and watery eyes.” why not add she smells like pot too…

  • Clyde

    Well pot was taking way to long to get legalized. Here is a thought, how about drug testing for cops, mayors, senators, congressmen, firemen etc.??
    Now she’ll probably sue the school and they will have to put her thru therapy, and give her,
    her job back

  • AnkenyAnkeny K-12

    I am a kindergarten teacher in another district and an Ankeny grad. I hope the school helps her get treatment and welcomes her back with open arms. Ankeny people are so judge-y. You guys realize people can be good teachers, good mothers, good people AND struggle with addiction, right? Those things aren’t mutually exclusive. I don’t know Mrs. Rich but I support her and hope she finds herself on the other side of this experience as a better and more wise member of our important profession.

    • ervserver

      she resigned, meaning she will go to another district somewhere and get anther teaching job. Sober or not. She didn’t lose her teaching license

    • Jim

      I know Jenny. She is wonderful. She is calling for help. She did this on purpose, wanting to get caught. She could not stop without help. She is begging for help. Last couple years have been very traumatic for her and she is in a spiral. I hope people have some sympathy as she is a good person, good mother and has always been a great teacher.

  • hksrt8

    Any person, especially the other Ankeny teacher who wishes Rich back with opens arms has no sense of security for the children in our school district!!! I was there. I saw what happened first hand. She does not deserve to ever teach again after. Those 22 innocent children are more valuable then “Busch light” and I must say, I’m sickened at the person who tried to help cover this up!!!!

    • Jim

      She is a good and loving teacher. Always has been. She has had a great deal of issues she has had to deal with lately and she needs help. I don’t know if she should teach again, but this is a call for help. She knew she would be caught, and she wanted to. She could not stop alone and this is how she is begging for help. Trust me, I know.

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