Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Teacher Misconduct Ignored

Excerpted from Teacher Magazine.

State lawmakers are demanding changes to rid classrooms of teachers with histories of sexual misbehavior, but for years the Legislature failed to repair educators' discipline system, a newspaper reported Sunday.

The Ohio Department of Education repeatedly asked for laws that would require criminal background checks and force districts to report misconduct to the agency.

Lawmakers also denied victims of decades-old child sex abuse the chance to file civil lawsuits against their abusers. One consequence is that offenders at private schools have been able to keep their violations hidden because those records are not public. The legislation could have helped identify teachers who preyed on students.

Lawmakers recently watered down a law that would have required children-services agencies to report all cases of abuse and neglect by licensed educators to the state's Department of Education. The law now requires reporting only when the abuse "directly relates to a licensee's duties and responsibilities."

Speaker Jon Husted called the House Education Committee hearings that were held last week to investigate flaws in the teacher-discipline system.

"It was my understanding that the laws on the books were sufficient to handle this. If they're not now, we'll make sure they are," said Husted, a suburban Dayton Republican.

The Ohio Department of Education is the only agency that can suspend or revoke an educator's license.

The Legislature has given in to pressure from teachers unions and lobbying by school administrators, said Mark Haverkos, a parent from West Chester Township in Butler County. He testified before a House committee last week.

"They've got to move parents up on the priority list," Haverkos said. "The system is gamed against us."

As this article points out, teacher's unions and and school administrators seem to consistently position themselves on the side against our children. They lobby for laws that protect those who wish to work around our children for the purpose of serving their perverted sexual desires.

Lawmakers are no better when they cave in to teacher's unions for the almighty dollar. Lawmakers tend to forget that it isn't money that gets them elected, its people. Parents, if you're going to continually entrust the care of your children to others, you absolutely need to stand up and insist that those who provide that care and those who make the laws that regulate them are putting the well being of the children first and foremost. If we don't do this collectively, we have no power.

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