Tuesday, June 17, 2008

LAUSD: Not Yet Settling for Teacher Civil Rights

Monday, June 9, in Department 64 of Los Angeles Superior Court, Los Angeles Unified lost its latest "Hail Mary" to dismiss 8-years' worth of trial and appeal in the sexual harassment complaint of former teacher, Janis Adams.

In a fruitless response to Judge Kenneth Freeman's oral ruling against the district, LAUSD attorney Linda Savitt started her arguments with, "First of all, let me say anyone who teaches high school deserves a medal of honor..."

Experienced faculty hears the "but" coming.

Savitt indeed continued: "...But kids are mouthing off, and you know they will." Mouthing off? Judge Freeman seemed to disagree that this perhaps easily foregone conclusion negated the severity of Adams' particular case, which included repeated acts of defamation, libel, attacks on her family, threats, and stalking from students during spring 2000 at Palisades Charter High School.

The judge agreed that these allegations were questions of fact to be weighed by a jury in deciding LAUSD's degree of liability for protecting teachers in the workplace.

New trial begins July 9, barring a settlement. Stay tuned here for updates.

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