How teachers can avoid termination when accused of sexual misconduct
A loophole in the law allows educators to clear their disciplinary record and start new every four years. This loophole enables some educators to avoid termination for sexual misconduct by merely making sure that the misconduct occurs at least four years apart.
The Roseville Joint Unified School District is trying to discipline one of its teachers for sexually harassing a student. But the law does not allow the school district to bring up the fact that this teacher has been the target of misconduct complaints five times in his last ten years. In the latest charge, a teenage Woodcreek High School student accused the teacher of massaging her shoulders, grabbing her hands, pulling her close and basically telling her that he loved her. The teacher denied the charge.
Passing the Trash
In another case in the Sacramento area, a teacher was able to get a job at another school after he was accused of molesting two students. This practice is called “passing the trash.” Even though jurors awarded $4 million in a civil lawsuit to the two students, the teacher, Abdol Hossein Mehrdadi, was still able to get hired as a substitute in the Elk Grove Unified and the Natomas Unified school districts before he was hired in Woodland.
Abdol Hossein Mehrdadi was able to continue teaching because his credentials remained valid and he was never arrested or charged in the alleged Sacramento incidents. His teaching credentials were finally revoked in 2015 due to misconduct, months after parents in Woodland raised questions about his past.
A spokesperson for the Association of California School Administrators is quoted in the Sacramento Bee as stating that it costs at least $250,000 to get rid of a teacher.
Assembly Bill 2128 seeks to remove the four-year loophole when it comes to sexual misconduct allegations. The proposed legislation will allow school administrators to consider an employees entire disciplinary history when it comes to inappropriate sexual behavior.
The award-winning law firm of Corsiglia McMahon and Allard has represented hundreds of sexual abuse victims. They are available to help you or a loved one if you face sexual misconduct by a teacher or school employee. Please call 408–289–1417 for a free consultation.