Thursday, April 19, 2012

Clear as Mud

Judging from the comments made after the article, this sounds like there was less here than what meets the eye:

A Wichita teacher had her license revoked this week after allegedly failing to report suspected child sexual abuse quickly enough, and some education officials say the punishment was too severe.

“It’s an absolute atrocity,” said Walt Chappell, a member of the Kansas State Board of Education from Wichita. “What this does is send a shiver down the spine of every teacher in the state.

“Here’s someone who is concerned about children and wants to protect children,” said Chappell, who said he has spoken with both the teacher and her lawyer. “And … they ran her through the wringer over something where she was trying to do her best.”

Donna L. Ford, 51, a kindergarten teacher at Cleaveland Elementary School, surrendered her teaching license to the state board, which voted 6-2 on Tuesday to accept the surrender and revoke Ford’s license. She had been a teacher for 17 years.


Until the reporter can actually say WHO made WHAT allegations, this story is as clear as mud. Were there criminal/misdemeanor charges brought against this teacher? Was this an allegation made by a principal and was this an internal matter that was brought to the attention of the state board? Did the parent make the allegation? Did a colleague? Did she actually do the deed and fail to report? Was the teacher a target of a bogus civil action claiming "failure to report" like yours truly was hit that was totally fabricated so mom could cash in on the settlement and buy goodies like a manicure and a cocktail ring with the money? We simply don't know.

According to some of the comments, the district committed extortion by allowing her to receive her full retirement benefits in exchange for the license. Fear of fucking lawsuits, of course, drove this.

I can tell you that while as a teacher you MUST report suspected child abuse, there is no way a teacher can prevent any parent or greedy attorney from filing a completely fabricated civil action and naming him or her in it. As long as our civil court system is broken and false lawsuits are allowed and teachers cannot countersue for libel, this garbage will continue.

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