Following her DUI arrest last week, North Dakota State Superintendent, Kirsten Baesler released a a public statement:

A week ago, I made an extremely poor decision when I got in my vehicle and drove after drinking alcohol. I recognize even more clearly today how deeply I disappointed so many people.

As a former teacher and a life-long learner, I understand that it is important to learn from your mistakes. To that end, I have decided to work with professional counselors in a formal treatment program to address my personal struggles regarding alcohol.

I understand and appreciate the need for the state superintendent to be an example for the students she serves. This incident was certainly one of my worst moments, and I’m so sorry.

It’s important to me to set an example by taking responsibility for my actions, with humility, and to learn from my mistakes -- and with the help of professionals, that is exactly what I intend to do, with determination, humility and hard work to make amends for my mistakes.

I am asking for forgiveness, and the grace needed to get back up and take on my life with dedication and joy.

I remain committed to the work and results we are achieving at the Department of Public Instruction. I am proud of the work that my team and I have accomplished.

While I take this time to prioritize my health and well-being, I will recommit myself with even greater intention and focus toward serving North Dakota’s students and their families with passion and dedication.

I ask that you please don’t allow this mistake of mine to undo all the good work we have begun and all we have yet to accomplish together.

Today I commit to you that I will work diligently – one day at a time -- to earn back your trust.

--Kirsten Baesler, North Dakota Superintendent of Public Instruction

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