WATCH: WSBT and WSJM make up FAKE story about school board resignations

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — WSBT and their newsgathering partners at WSJM News Radio made up a story out of whole cloth that nearly an entire local school board was planning to resign yesterday. The story was in regard to Brandywine Schools where a recently elected conservative majority has been under attack by leftist activist for attempting to make it more difficult for children to check out pornographic and inappropriate material from school libraries. Both news organizations claimed the conservative members of the board were resigning, along with the superintendent. Neither of the organizations gave sources for where the information on the resignations came from. The story is not and never was true.

“Big changes are coming to Brandywine schools. The school board is expecting major resignations Monday. Among those stepping down are the board’s President, Vice President and Brandywine’s superintendent Travis Walker. Several trustees will also resign, as well as the board’s treasurer and secretary.” WSBT wrote in their story online.

WSBT removed the story from their website without explanation early Monday morning.

However, hours after WSBT took the story down, WSJM posted the exact same story (word for word) on their website before also removing it.

RNM reached out to Board President Tom Payne to get a comment regarding the false reporting. He tells RNM he called the WSJM reporter to find out how all of this happened. Payne claims the reporter blamed WSBT for the reporting error and then hung up on him.

It turns out, WSJM reporter Michael Arney even sent Payne an email attempting to verify the information. But, decided to post the false story before the board member had an opportunity to respond. RNM requested that email from Mr. Payne. It can be seen below.

Ironically, according to Arney’s bio on the WSJM website, “Michael calls himself both a news anchor/reporter and ‘professional gossip.'”

Hours later, WSBT posted a retraction to their story making the strange claim that they made a “clerical error” leading to the false report. It is not clear how a clerical error can lead to an entire false story being written and then broadcasted across the region. WSBT does not explain how they came across the information or what sources may have contributed to the made up story.

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