Posted on | September 8, 2012 | 5 Comments
In the last five years in New York City, 97 tenured teachers or school employees have been charged by the Department of Education with sexual misconduct. . . .
[T]he unions — believing that they are helping the cause of teachers by being weak on sexual predators — prefer suspensions and fines, and not dismissal, for teachers charged with inappropriate sexual conduct. . . .
One example: An arbitrator in 2007 found that teacher Alexis Grullon had victimized young girls with repeated hugging, “incidental though not accidental contact with one student’s breast” and “sexually suggestive remarks.” The teacher had denied all these charges. In the end the arbitrator found him “unrepentant,” yet punished him with only a six-month suspension.
Another example from 2007: Teacher William Scharbach was found to have inappropriately touched and held young boys. “Respondent’s actions at best give the appearance of impropriety and at worst suggest pedophilia,” wrote the arbitrator—before giving the teacher only a reprimand. The teacher didn’t deny the touching but denied that it was inappropriate.
Then there was teacher Steven Ostrin, who in 2010 was found to have asked a young girl to give him a striptease, harassed students by text, and engaged in sexual banter. The arbitrator in his case concluded that since the teacher hadn’t actually solicited sex from students, the charges—all of which the teacher denied—warranted only a suspension.
Go read the whole thing. The bizarre laws in New York, essentially dictated to legislators by the teachers unions, have the effect of making public-school employees a specially protected class of sexual predators. Behavior that would put any other person in prison results in slap-on-the-wrist administrative discipline actions for members of the teachers unions.
Once a teacher gains tenure — and tenure is a non-negotiable “right,” according to the teachers unions — it becomes practically impossible to fire the teacher for any reason.