EDUCATION + SCHOOLS

State Board of Education member Natalie Cline says she’s in the clear, USBE disagrees

Jul 19, 2023, 4:19 PM | Updated: Feb 12, 2024, 9:03 am

Utah State Board of Education is pictured, the board is investigating board member natalie cline...

The Utah State Board of Education is pictured in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, July 26, 2022. (Kristin Murphy/Deseret News)

(Kristin Murphy/Deseret News)

Tune in to Dave & Dujanovic. 

SALT LAKE CITY– There is new drama circling around Utah State Board of Education member Natalie Cline.

She now claims she is in the clear after an internal audit looked at her recent controversial comments. The board disagrees.

“USBE internal audit shows no wrongdoing,” Cline wrote on her Facebook page and posted to her organization called Higher Ground.

I received the results of two USBE Internal Audit Reports in reference to reports of my statements. Both reports indicate no evidence of wrongdoing regarding allegations that my comments violated Board Policy…or Board Bylaws, including claims that I placed board staff or individuals at risk for harm, incited or encouraged violence, promoted inaccurate information, or defamed staff or individuals.

Board Communications Coordinator, Kelsey James, said this was a preliminary, internal audit that Cline released.

The State Board said it is not done looking into any of those allegations.

“Her stating that everything’s been concluded and she’s found with no wrongdoing and this is a done matter, is not accurate,” James said. “The investigation is still ongoing.”

Preliminary audits are given to let the subject of them know that there have been allegations against them and give them a chance to respond. They are usually kept private, but Cline released it herself.

Cline came under fire for a social media post last week claiming that public schools are complicit in “grooming children for sex trafficking.” She’s also being investigated by the Board for alleged comments about a staff member’s sexual orientation, and another claim.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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 James also said they are getting multiple emails both in support of Cline and complaining against her every day since KSL NewsRadio first reported Cline had 87 total complaints against her since November of 2021. 

The group that Cline is a part of, Higher Ground, said the press release would be Cline’s only public comment.  

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State Board of Education member Natalie Cline says she’s in the clear, USBE disagrees