Teacher sex bill succumbs
June 29, 2012
A plan to streamline and simplify the process for firing teachers guilty of sex, drugs or violence involving children died in an Assembly committee this week, victim of vigorous opposition from the California Teachers Association. (Sacramento Bee)
The measure by Alex Padilla (D-Los Angeles was defeated in the Democrat-controlled Education Committee despite support from numerous other education lobby groups.
The CTA argued that the current process works. The organization objected to a key part of the proposed legislation which would have scrubbed a current requirement for assigning a three-person panel to hear dismissal cases. Padilla’s bill would have removed from those panels two teachers, leaving only an administrative law judge to hear a case.
“The current system is fair and credible,” Warren Fletcher, president of United Teachers Los Angeles, told the Bee. “It takes politics out of the process.”
Padilla introduced the measure after the arrest of a Los Angeles teacher, Mark Berndt, a third-grade teacher arrested in January on 23 counts of lewd conduct.