Part of the Bay Area News Group

A disturbing report at an elementary school

By Katy Murphy
Thursday, January 20th, 2011 at 7:28 pm in elementary schools, investigations, safety.

Oakland school district officials are investigating a report that two second-graders engaged in oral sex in their classroom while the teacher was present. They’re also looking into a complaint that, in the same classroom and in front of the teacher, some students were taking off their clothes and clowning around.

The teacher, who has been placed on administrative leave, apparently told school officials he was unaware of either incident — both of which reportedly happened last week. The principal got the report on Wednesday, immediately after a child told a staff member about it, said OUSD Spokesman Troy Flint.

After conducting multiple interviews, Flint said, “We believe the substance of the story is true.”

Here is a copy of the letter that went home to Markham families today.

Ug. Any Markham parents or teachers out there?

[You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.]

  • Jesse James

    This is awful. I hope the families, kids and school community can recover from such horrible events. The teacher ick.

  • Nextset

    An interesting story. Wonder what really happened?

    Whatever did happen, the version given here is the silliest thing I’ve heard and I’ve heard a lot of stories about sexual acting out – some true, some not. There is no reason to believe any of this (teacher misconduct) just from this report.

    I for one am not ready to condemn a teacher on a story like this without some credible evidence. And no, I don’t believe the first thing any 2nd grader says.

    I would caution the school and it’s employees to watch their words very carefully when they speak about an employee of the district. People and employers are held liable when they repeat slander. And there are rules about how personnel actions must be conducted.

    And a lot is being said here publicly while hiding the rest of the story. When I see that done my experience is that somebody is playing games or has an agenda other than the truth. Exactly what is it the speakers of this story are communicating – that the children were taking direction from the adult? That he or she encouraged and permitted the childrens’ conduct? That only the 3 of them were present for the activity and it was scheduled? Funny how they oh so carefully don’t say that. Just insinuate.

    So we are left to go “bad teacher, BAD teacher”.

    Maybe so, Maybe not. It remains to be seen, or at least disclosed. And since no arrest has been made I doubt the conclusions of wrongdoing are so clear. So somebody decided to release this statement at this time in this form. Hope they consulted with counsel first.

    We’ll see. Just another day in the life of Oakland Teachers and their schools.

    Could this statement have been instead released saying that –

    “Schoolchildren were reported to have engaged in sexual activity with each other on more than one occasion, and a teacher reported to have been in the vicinity has been suspended pending further investigation”?

    You see the difference.

    Without a confession of wrongdoing or clear evidence other than possible self-serving statements of children, the district should not move so quickly to destroy the reputation of an employee. Common courtesy and decency says you wait for the conclusion of the Inquisition.

  • Katy Murphy

    Just to clarify: I don’t think the district officials were suggesting the teacher orchestrated some sexual act in the classroom, but rather that — if the story is true — there was a serious supervision failure.

  • Nextset

    Katy: I would hope that is the issue. The district could have said so explicitly and did not. It seems to me for their own reasons they posted this press release insinuating the more sinister facts. Since they were going to make a press release they could have just stated the suspension was related to the issue of failure to supervise/control.

    I suspect they did not have any Counsel review the proposed press release and that kind of penny wise and pound foolish thinking – if it actually occurred – to me could reflect a willingness to harm employees for political expediency. Not only is there a duty of care to the students but for the workers also.

    And if one is at a school district where neither means much, woe to both. It is during a crisis like this you see how a district really thinks.

    I have seen workers thrown to the wolves by many businesses over many years, sometimes for nothing, just from casual indifference and neglect. I don’t like it. Maybe I’m just sensitive.

  • Turanga_teach

    But that’s not a press release: it’s a letter to families of that specific school, which made its way to the press. I am genuinely curious about how it did this, as it seems beyond stupid for OUSD to have intentionally shared this incident with the media.

  • The real issue

    Nextset, this is the first time I have agreed with you. Well stated.

  • The real issue

    Edit to Add:
    Not well stated because I agree with you. Well stated because you didn’t include any indication of racial or class bias.

  • Katy Murphy

    As I understand it, KTVU found out about the reported incident first — from a parent, I think — and then OUSD released details about it. Letters sent home to parents are public record.

  • Starshaped

    I agree with Nextset as well. Unless we know what actually happened, its hard to make a determination as to what is true. What I do know from the teachers that work or have worked at Markham, is that the principal at Markham has a history of being hostile to the staff (if its the same principal from last year and the year before). Of course, that might just be people that I know and their reality, I don’t know from first hand knowledge. I’m not saying that this is the administrator fault but perhaps there was a break down in communication between the teacher and the administration concerning the incident.

  • Another OUSD Teacher

    Teaching is difficult and kids come with all sorts of sad baggage, but the bottom line is that teachers are accountable for what happens in their classroom. There is absolutely no excuse for thie to have occurred while the teacher was in the classroom.

  • Another OUSD Teacher

    Teaching is difficult and kids come with all sorts of sad baggage, but the bottom line is that teachers are accountable for what happens in their classroom. There is absolutely no excuse for this to have occurred while the teacher was in the classroom.

  • livegreen

    This is very disappointing, especially for the kids involved. However as a 1x incident it does not deserve front page headlines on either the Tribune or Chronicle websites. It is simply not reflective of the broader issues impacting the broader community.

    It should be reported. It is just one more sensational, as well as anti-Oakland bias, to report it as the one of the lead stories.

  • Katy Murphy

    I strongly agree that these allegations should be reported, but not sensationalized. I was asked to write a follow-up story for tomorrow’s paper — not sure where it will be placed — but today’s print story was buried on the back page.

    Online news placement is a little less clear-cut, as I understand it. Most breaking news goes up top, and if it gets a lot of hits, it stays there.

  • TheTruthHurts

    “Officer-involved shooting. Officer placed on paid administrative leave pending investigation.”

    This kind of statement happens every week in Oakland. Why wasn’t something as simple as this done? Every morning I turn on the news and hear those words which is why I could repeat them. No need for insinuation. No need for assumption. No need for “we believe the stories to be true.”

    Just take the allegations seriously, conduct your investigation and provide the employee paid leave while the investigation is ongoing.

    Why are simple things made complicated?

    At least I get to agree with Nextset.

  • TheTruthHurts

    As for news coverage, this is getting national attention. It’s getting that attention because humans are sick and the media plays on that sickness. If what is alleged actually occurred, it is symptomatic of what is going on in the communities in which these children live. That is what is not being reported. The tortuous lives some of these children endure is not being reported and certainly not sensationalized toward ACTION.

    If I thought reporting would lead to action, I might be OK with it. I don’t. Reporting will lead to a week of sick titillation and mock outrage. Maybe some children will be placed in some marginal foster care (if they’re not already in foster care). Maybe the teacher will be moved to another poor neighborhood school. Maybe a speech. Maybe a task force.

    BUT, generational poverty and self-predatory community behavior will continue unabated. A few “lucky” kids will escape and the rest will be doomed to the cess pool of their birth. Without structural interruption and intervention, what has gone on will simply continue and intensify. That his been the lived experience for 50 years and I see very limited signs of change.

    sigh :(

  • Charlie G.

    Katy-

    If this were a story about such a despicable incident at a charter school- what would the storyline be from your angle?

    On this blog?

    Truth is, while this act is a horrible incident for the kids, staff and parents- its another incident at Oakland Unified School District- who celebrate inches of growth in a ditch hundreds of feet in depth!

    There are far more damaging daily incidents that have continued from one generation to the next such as dismal graduation rates, school violence (reported or not),and terrible education.

    Charters have to seek “approval” from one of the worst districts in the state, while they( school districts) can destroy children for generations. When will schools such as Mrakham march up to a firing squad to be judged?

    Using the sad story at present, if this were a charter school I bet that Katy, to her credit, would have her slant revealed ever so slightly as it happens every so often, while other media would be in a rush to sensationalize it and charter schools across the nation would feel the brunt of such a tragic story. One fall all fall in the charter world-but for the traditionalists- its okay. OUSD will roll on in a matter of a weekend.

    How much equity can a system take- or do we have it in public education?

  • Katy Murphy

    An interesting hypothetical, Charlie G. — and one I hope never comes to pass.

  • Nextset

    Real Issue: Watch out, if too many people agree with me the world is going to end…

    As far as the racial and class bias thing – I’m a realist. Other’s often aren’t. I can get racial and class real fast on this. Why should I since the info is so sketchy?

    But how about this… Let’s suppose you are a teacher and you have a choice of working in an upper class white/jewish/asian district – say, Piedmont. Or you have an offer from a gritty urban black dominated district – say Oakland.

    And you know that you will have days like this… Who is going to do a better job taking care of their staff? And exactly why is that?

    I have relatives teaching or recently retired at LA Unified and Richmond/Contra Costa Schools. Family have been teachers in (black) public schools for over a century. Teaching is a tough job and despite any complaining I do I want to come down on the side of the classroom teacher – they work hard for the money.

    And there is far more that can go wrong fast an urban black school. Is it always the teacher’s fault (as opposed to bad students, bad families and bad administration)? No it’s not.

    The facts aren’t in yet at all and they probably will be hidden because the bad actors here are the minors. I would be pleased if the teacher gets vindicated. Maybe not, but I hope so.

  • TheTruthHurts

    Say your prayers, the world is ending soon.

  • http://www.thefrustratedteacher.com/ TFT

    TheTruthHurts made an important point: these kids bring these behaviors from home. They probably sit around with the grownups watching porn or something. Generational poverty produces some pretty anti-social behaviors.

    And it is kids raised like this that teachers get blamed for producing. Of course the district chose to vilify, without basis, the teacher. It’s the zeitgeist–it’s all because of crappy teachers. Except we know it’s not.

    Nextset is on the money.

  • J.R.

    TFT,

    “it’s all because of crappy teachers. Except we know it’s not”.

    The problem is, that “we” don’t yet know much of anything, the most you could claim would be, “we are reasonably sure in the majority of cases that it is not the fault of the teachers”, in some cases it is . Only certain things are absolute.

  • Katy Murphy

    I would not assume that exposure to pornography is limited to children born into poverty (or to low-income parents, for that matter). Just think about who has the most access to online content.

    A study published in the journal Pediatrics in early 2007 (before the iPhone) found that 42 percent of kids between the ages of 10 and 17 had seen online pornography in the previous year. It also found that 66 percent of those children said they didn’t want to see those images.

    http://www.unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/CV153.pdf

  • Katy Murphy

    In fact, the Berkeley Parents Network — a group I don’t exactly associate with generational poverty — has a thread about it. The top entries are from the freaked-out parents of 12- and 11-year-olds.

    They’re not 8, but still.

  • http://www.thefrustratedteacher.com/ TFT

    I didn’t say exposure to porn is limited to children born into poverty.

    Your argument does not negate what I am saying. Sure, older kids who have computers in the house (they also probably have books) may have seen some pornographic images. And their parents were probably able to help ease the freak that may have ensued.

    The kids in the story apparently engaged in mocking behavior. Sex play is common among very young children, and should be ignored. But when an 8 year old demonstrates this behavior, which by 8 years old should disgust most children, you can be pretty sure they have seen it and it has been okay-ed by the grown up present. It is anti-social, learned behavior.

    This is more likely to happen in homes suffering generational poverty, and we all, including Nextset, know that.

  • http://www.thefrustratedteacher.com/ TFT

    J.R. says: “in some cases it is”

    J.R., if I can’t make a definitive statement, neither can you. Or, we both can, and we would both be right.

  • Katy Murphy

    This is what you said: “… these kids bring these behaviors from home. They probably sit around with the grownups watching porn or something. Generational poverty produces some pretty anti-social behaviors.”

    In response to your speculation about what’s “probably” going on in the living rooms of Oakland’s poor families, I thought I’d point out that kids of all stripes seem to be viewing pornography these days — intentionally or unwittingly.

    We don’t know what happened in that Markham classroom, but it seems premature at this point to assume it was a product of generational poverty — just as it is to conclude that it was the fault of a grossly negligent teacher.

  • http://www.thefrustratedteacher.com/ TFT

    No, I described what might very well be going on in the homes of the kids involved if it turns out they engaged in the activity, which is completely possible.

    My point was to show how quick OUSD was to blame the teacher publicly while avoiding what could be a contributing factor to the incident–that the family was not raising social kids. Of course OUSD can’t say anything negative about the family, even if the family is headed by an incompetent–they don’t know.

    What OUSD leaders should know is that they have a population in Oakland that has been suffering for generations. OUSD veterans have seen this behavior before, as have most teachers who work in impoverished districts.

    I have seen this stuff. I have worked in these schools. I live near these Markham folks. What I am describing is frighteningly common, and to ignore the possibility is to continue to deny that generational poverty affects kids more than just about anything when it comes to educational outcomes.

    I agree we should not condemn anyone in this specific case, especially without knowing the truth. Maybe we shouldn’t condemn them if the case turns out to be true, either. Disseminating the accusation should wake folks up to the fact that there are neglected children in their midst, and they have a responsibility to help them, if only to protect their own kids from the negative influence of this kind of anti-social behavior.

  • Nextset

    I still condemn the school’s press release/parental notification letter. It was wrong to draft that letter the way they did to trash the teacher’s reputation before formal hearing. There was no need to make the statement read the way they did. My opinion is that they did so the slam the teacher. Now maybe they know something. Maybe the writer of that letter was angry at the teacher – it sounds like it. There are ways to write these notification letters and this is a good example of when you call in your lawyer. Lawyers are experienced at writing things for publication that are written to avoid saying something while saying something.

    Back to the life of the poor teachers… Yes, at lower class/black schools you have problems you don’t commonly see at Piedmont. Yes, children of single mothers have a host of social problems, behaviors and issues normal kids don’t have. Yes, children of single mothers are at higher risk for a host of problems including getting molested (“Mommie’s Boyfriend” is one of the most dangerous people these kids will keep company with) as well as sexually acting out. Yes, lower class children and poor black children are getting more exposure to dope fiends than the Piedmont Kids. Children of druggies and alcoholics are really at higher risk for getting molested and getting involved in premature/precocious sexuality. Piedmont residents can be alcoholics and worse of course, but you have more drunks and druggies per square block when you go downmarket.

    So if you take that OUSD job instead of that Piedmont Unified job you are going to have more opportunity to deal with childhood sexual issues and acting out. Is the school going to tell you this, establish protocols and conduct training great enough to cover the issues? I don’t know, I don’t work there. Will someone at OUSD tell us what the training and protocols are that are put in place by OUSD to protect the teachers and the students (In that order)? Is there even a practice of expelling sexually active and acting-out kids so they don’t contaminate the other kids?

  • Ms. J.

    I am still reflecting on what I think of this story, which sounds terrible, but I do agree with those who say we don’t know enough to understand it yet and that the great interest in it is mostly prurient–the media loves sensational stories of depravity.

    On another note, I am moved to comment in response to Charlie G, post 16: Do you really think school districts ‘destroy children for generations’? Did you reread your post after writing it? Seriously?

  • Charlie G

    Ms. J

    Generations is correct! Just because the word Achievement Gap was recently developed doesnt mean that an acheivement gap did not exist right?
    What about those years before mandated testing when hippies were current and running schools without any measures? Could you imagine a black inner city chid sitting in those classrooms?

    How many Black and brown dropouts were produced in the 60-90′s? Prisoners? Deaths? Minority doctors? Now compare this to whites and you know what you got? Generations of miseducated colored adults breeding miseducated kids.

    Yes- effects ripple on through genealogy as does DNA Ms J. Only the lucky ones have survived.

  • Jacob

    Isin’t this the same district where board members have relationships with students? AND, I might add…..nothing happens to them and furthermore, they are allowed to run and win re-election!!

    The most improved district…..HA,HA,HA….

    Such a disaster of a city- only those without kids and those who dont care would stay in the crap!

    Oakland…once again the disgust of the nation!

  • Gordon Danning

    I agree with Nextset about the apparent rush to judgment, because:

    1. When I was in middle school, I witnessed a boy IN THE FRONT ROW pull his pants open so that the girl next to him peered down his pants. They did it very quietly as the teacher turned her back. So, here’s what I bet happened in the classroom:
    a. The teacher assigned individual or group work.
    b. The teacher went to give individual attention to a struggling student.
    c. The class is quiet – quiet enough that there is no evidence of students being off task (because, unless kids are sleeping, off-task usually equals noise, especially in elementary school)
    d. In the back of the room, the two students very quietly and briefly engage in sex play. (Note that i said “briefly,”; when we hear “oral sex,” the image that comes to mind is of a lengthy encounter as is normally depicted in the media (including the porn industry). I’m guessing that the actual physical contact in this case was 15 seconds, tops.

    2. The Chron article this a.m. quoted a pediatricain thusly:”‘Oral copulation between children is profoundly not normal,’” said Dr. James Crawford-Jakubiak, medical director of the Center for Child Protection at Oakland Children’s Hospital. Crawford-Jakubiak said investigators should find out whether one child initiated the contact, and what that child had been exposed to outside the classroom. He said it’s possible one of the children has been sexually abused and needs help.”

    So, my guess is: 1) The incident was NOT the result of poor supervision by the teacher; and 2) The incident is NOT indicative of any systemic problem in the school, in Oakland, etc.

  • ACT

    To what extent is the principal being held accountable for lack of supervision of staff at her school? Do things like this happen at schools where principals are about and aware of what is actually going on and keeping on top of things?

  • Jesse James

    As the person who said the teacher ick, I think what is ick is that he didn’t know about nor did he do anything about the incidents. Clowning around in various stages of undress is not something an aware teacher would miss. None of this would have come to such media hysteria if the teacher had dealt with it at the school and parent level. Kids need to be supervised at all times. If two incidents happen in one week in one class there were probably other problems with supervision.

    To me, what is most disturbing is that this issue was unknown to my principal until I brought it up yesterday. Teacher, families, staff and volunteers be reminded to keep watchful eyes on our charges for so many reasons, among them, safety and liability.

  • Jesse James

    Jacob, How is that helpful? Do you have ideas that might make a difference? We can’t tear it all down. Is everything perfect in your world? If it is, how did it happen.

  • Alice Spearman

    As a Board Member, I am so concerned about the incident which was reported to the school on Wednesday. There is a very serious investigation being held at this momet to ascertain what happened at the school. I am however very troubled with the tenor of the conversation being held on this Blog. At this momet none of us actually knows what really took place, and for us to come to some judgement of the events, economic-social status, employment status, which precipitate certain actions, family connections, etc. is just as bizzare to me as the reported incident. Yes we all have speculations, that is just human, but to rush to judgement as some of you have exspressed, please. The seriousness of the reported incident has to be investigated and we need to wait to pass judgement until there is a report about Who, What, When, and Where. And Yes, this incident could have happened at any school, public, private, or charter. Public Schools report, Private and Charters do not Report, so who is to say how many of these types of incidents go unreported, therefore un-noticed to the public?
    I am so ashamed that this incident happened. I am so ashamed that I live in a city that had 13 murders of children attending our schools last year go unsolved. How many other incidents has happened to children in this city that go unreported, I know there are thousands, we have CPS, and they are not out of business. Our school district has to beg for funding to have some sort of intervention services that serve children of need, we have to beg for funding too keep childcare centers open. When will this city prioritize children and services to familes, when will citizens stop usuing prostitizing words, get out of their comfort zones and help? The internet is very good at sheilding you, many unlike me do not use their God Given Name, but choose to remain anonmous, safe from on looking eyes, you may have to defend your comments in public.
    Trust Me, when this investigation closes and the report is made, APPROPRIATE ACTIONS will be taken by this district, no matter who are involved. This is a fact!

  • AC Mom

    Ms. Spearman:

    If the Internet and the World Wide Web disappeared tomorrow, people would still be talking to their family, friends and neighbors about this incident in the same manner that you see reflected on this comments board.

    What struck me about your responses is that you stated that the matter is still under investigation, so why has OUSD staff made any statements verbally or in writing about what actually took place? Nextset, made the point quite well regarding statements made about the classroom, but what of the students? Was there any thought of how the districts statements might negatively affect the students involved and their families, or even the investigation? The national attention that has been generated by this case is in large part due to how information has been disseminated by OUSD.

    As to the request for help….many of us have mortgages and rents that we can barely afford, and jobs that can be gone tomorrow–if we have not lost them already. That’s the reality that many of OUSDs families and people within the city at large deal with. The most some of us can do is to send our child to school well loved, well prepared, well fed, etc. Some may have money to give, others just have their time. These are really troublesome times. My best hope for this situation at hand is that the kids are safe, and that help is provided if needed.

  • Alice Spearman

    AC,
    We do not know what actually happened. You have to be very delibverate when it comes to questioning children. Hindsight is 50/50, there is always another way to say something, I was not involved when it came to dissemenating the information.
    Let me say this about involvement. If you have children in any school, take time out to go and visit the school atleast every other month and check on your child is the best involvement that anyone could do. Don’t cost anything, your employer cannot peanalize you either, there is a state law that allows parents to go see about their children.

  • http://www.thefrustratedteacher.com/ TFT

    You are a board member, Alice? Charters are public schools and have to report. Every private (and public, for that matter) school I know of has staff sign documents indicating they will report.

    Perhaps Oakland only needs a new board?

  • L.K.

    Several things disturb me about this. First of all, why did the principal feel it necessary to send a bulletin to the parents on this? This seems a gross violation of the privacy rights of the students involved. Yes, the children remain unnamed, but in an intimate setting like an elementary school, everyone knows everyone. This is a matter that should have quietly been referred to CPS if the principal believed that there was explicit sexual behavior. Such indicates to me that a child has been exposed to something they should not have been or is perhaps a victim of abuse. The principal has seriously mishandled this and should also be placed on administrative leave. Second, this must have happened in a secluded area of the classroom or coatroom (I believe a parent said as much). There is no way that something like that could have happened in a public area without a chorus of “ews” and “icks” from the other students. If anything, perhaps the teacher was too trusting. I can imagine a student or students asking to go to the coatroom to get an eraser/pencil/book from a backpack. Third, the rush to judge the teacher is disheartening. We don’t know the circumstances or even if anything as sensational as has been reported actually happened.

  • J.R.

    Alice wrote,

    “Our school district has to beg for funding to have some sort of intervention services that serve children of need, we have to beg for funding too keep childcare centers open. When will this city prioritize children and services to families”

    For decades now the US has spent at a rate at or near the top of any other country(year after year)on education. The real problem is that the money that is meant for the kids education gets frittered away in a system full of people who are not directly tied to teaching. If things were different and the economic downturn never happened, people would still be spending more than we have and still delivering questionable academic results(enough is never enough). The lid is coming off the education system and taxpayers are able to see inside, and they aren’t thrilled with what they see. So when you opine about being underfunded ask yourself if the system is not too bloated, please think about what is the really important objective of education funding, the adults or the kids?

  • JustTeach!

    I pray for all of the students in that classroom. The district should put a true “highly qualified” teacher in that class for the remainder of the year…the children deserve it.

  • livegreen

    I agree with Alice’s first point about the rush to judgement, and I agree with Nexset, LK and others about the principal’s bulletin.

    However, I don’t agree with Alice’s 2nd point, especially “When will this city prioritize children and services to families?”. Uh, Alice, how about the 3% of the City’s General Fund that goes to OFCY funding? The significant amount of funding that goes to Measylure Y programs in OUSD? The Measure B bonds for Facilities upgrades financed by property taxes?

    Certainly not signs that this, one of the most liberal cities in the country, isn’t prioritizing children…

  • Nextset

    I tend to agree with AC Mom. Ms Spearman and the board need to think long and hard about that parental notice letter that was sent – I call it a press release because the administrator who sent it out knew and should have known it would be sensational and hit the media – now worldwide. The school, the district and the students now live with this ink on their reputation. Regardless of the merits of the poor teacher at the center of this mess, we must turn first to the administrators who serve to keep the lid on the place.

    I think that letter did unreasonable harm to the school and the district and of course the teacher and children. Such a huge bombshell should never have gone out no matter what the merits, without direct involvement of school counsel and the superintendant and or board chair. Now for all we know, they were involved. I wasn’t there. But there are two problems here, that letter and the fact that perhaps the kiddies are doing sexual gymnastics on the property.

    I would expect the board to deal with both and you know, it’s going to largely have to be done behind closed doors. It’s a personnel matter and the board will have to make a statement that to the extent it’s a personnel matter there will be no public discussion of the whys and wherefores.

    But I’d probably dismiss the principal if I’m actually correct about everything that has occurred, and quickly. If the principal reads this – don’t worry, I couldn’t possibly ever guess or know the truth about all this, as I’ve said, I wasn’t there. But if I’m correct on my assumptions…

    So I don’t know what went on in the classroom, but Nonetheless if the school is in an uproar and everybody in authority is humiliated and distressed, you’ve got to fire the administrators who serve at the pleasure, and bring in fresh personalities to clean up the mess and see to it that the place doesn’t get into a scandal again. They would need to go just because they were there and in charge at the time of the problem. No further cause is required. When you make someone principal it’s on the understanding that you have ever confidence that their mere presence avoids scandal and disaster. If you no longer have that confidence, they must go. The replacement principal can investigate and decide what if anything to do with the teacher.

    This is what I expect from the Board and the Super.

    Or I’d replace them too.

  • winnipeg nancy

    Why isn’t anyone pointing out that this school made remarkable gains in its 2010 CST scores? Maybe the highest gains in the district?

  • Susan

    Whys isint anyone pointing out ther test scores? Are you serious? How many kids do you have at this school and if so, does that matter right now?

    How many care that we also have a board member who had an affair with a sudent and still remains-in fact re-elected?

  • gee yu

    Gordon Danning thank you for you comments
    my niece told me a boy expose himself in the hallway of a north oakland high school..and it was vidoetaped..an investigation occurred and the boy was still going to my nieces’ classes..

    Charlie G.charter schools have there problems if you want good reading I read the 64 page report from fresno and it was eye opening.

    “Charter school faces withdrawals over punishment
    By HEATHER VOGELL
    The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
    Sunday, March 22, 2009
    A south Fulton County charter school following one of the most lauded education programs nationwide is embroiled in a dispute over discipline that has led at least seven parents to yank their children out midyear.
    Madfloridian’s Journal

    The KIPP Fresno Horror Story That the National Media Won’t Tell: Part I
    In April, May, and June 2008, parents of children attending KIPP Academy Fresno Charter School filed multiple complaints with the Fresno Unified School District about practices at the school. Even though the District passed the complaints to the KIPP Board to investigate, the Board had no authority to demand answers or to make personnel changes and, therefore, advised the District to take charge of the investigation. Following an investigation, a 64 page Notice to Cure and Correct report was issued on December 11, 2008.

  • livegreen

    Susan, Good questions, especially that last one.

  • http://www.thefrustratedteacher.com/ TFT

    That last question is easily answered–the board member won an election. Blame the voters.

  • Alice Spearman

    TFT, Yes I am a bord member! Wether you belive it or not, Charters report what they want to report. There is no oversight as to what they do administratively. You had your chance last November to replace 3 board members, all three were re-elected, someone agreed with them
    Nexstet, this time I agree with you! It is this boards responsibility, all these issues will be discussed. Whatever decisions are made, it will take a quorum of the board, (4 members to agree), I am only one, to give directions to the Superintendent.