Teacher may learn accusers

first_img “We need a new policy,” said board member Rob Collins, a former teacher for more than three decades who pushed the issue to the forefront. “Every school has a different policy. It should be more uniform. Parents need to work with teachers to better reach a solution. The teacher has a right to be informed.” School board member Carla Kurachi said she is not sure she can support the proposed policy because all complaints – anonymous or not – should be investigated. “I have a problem with this,” she said. “If they investigate and it’s true, what difference does it make if it’s anonymous? There have been incidents of severe inappropriate behavior that’s been anonymously reported and found to be true. I would hesitate to ignore them. If it’s true, you take appropriate action.” Kurachi said some parents might not want to disclose their names out of fear of retribution. Angie Valencia-Martinez, (805) 583-7604 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! SIMI VALLEY – Under a proposal by local school officials, anonymous complaints against teachers would not be used to take disciplinary action against them. The new rule would bar the Simi Valley Unified School District from taking formal action against any of the district’s 1,000 teachers without first disclosing pertinent information to the employee – specifically, the complainant’s name. The proposal, being drafted by Arleigh Kidd, a teachers union leader, and the district’s assistant superintendent of personnel services, Don Gaudioso, must be approved by the five-member school board and would change the way schools handle complaints about staff members. “It’s not fair to the employee unless they know all the details,” Gaudioso said, adding that the proposal would be ready by month’s end. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECoach Doc Rivers a “fan” from way back of Jazz’s Jordan Clarkson Now, most complaints are handled at the school site at the discretion of administrators. A written policy, revised in 1995, details a step-by-step process of handling complaints concerning school personnel, but makes no mention of anonymous sources. The policy states that a parent or guardian with a complaint should attempt to resolve the issue with the teacher personally. If that doesn’t work, the school principal can get involved and open an investigation. If the complaint remains unresolved, the superintendent makes the final decision. Kidd, former Simi Educators Association president, said anonymous complaints have unfairly been used to take formal action against teachers in the past, including one case in which a teacher was going to be put on “an improvement plan.” Teachers are entitled to respond to the charges and tell their side of the story, he said. “Anonymous information should not be used at all,” said Kidd, now executive director of a local chapter of the California Teachers Association. “You have a right to know who your accuser is. How can you defend yourself when you don’t even know who is accusing you?” The policy should make its way to the school board in February or March, officials said. last_img read more

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