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US teacher accused of threatening to ‘out’ straight pupil

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  1. This needs a good investigation. Astounding!

  2. BrazilBoysBlog 13 Mar 2010, 2:22am

    Apparently this was investigated by the education department and no wrong-doing was found. Apart from the fact that this is a civil suit, it has to be an incredible accusation.. one of the wierdest stories I have heard for a long time. I suspect its probably a load of rubbish, alleged to obtain cash from the teacher.

  3. As i saw from my school, some kid threatens a teacher and tells everyone that teacher hit him and the kids stupidly pass it round as the truth
    I had people tell me that crap even though i was in that maths class and there wasnt a fight, just shouting
    Moral of the story:
    It only takes an accusation to cost a teacher his job and maybe his career, even if its never proved

  4. Simple answer, fire the teacher. He/she is apparently not fit to run a open learning environment plain and simple.

  5. Frankly I can’t see this as a false accusation against the teacher originating with the kid.
    Given that so many kids use gay as a pejorative term, and once you’re out of the closet, it’s very hard to claw your way back into it, not to mention the “No smoke without fire” attitude kids have to playground rumours, there’s no way a kid would willingly put himself through all that under false pretences just to get even with a teacher with a false accusation.
    Most kids are smarter than that.
    They might falsely accuse the teacher of attempting to molest them to ruin a teacher’s career, but when the question of sexuality is hanging over the accuser, that’s a whole other bag.
    I don’t think the kid would volunteer that info unless it was at least partly true.
    Which leads us to wonder what the hell the teacher was playing at?

  6. A very garbled and confusing story. I wonder what actually happened?

  7. BrazilBoysBlog 13 Mar 2010, 2:50pm

    @4 Read the article. The teacher has left anyway. This is now a civil action. (presumably against the school district seeking cash)

    But, well done Mr judge and jury! ‘Fire the teacher´.. I see, really simple…. and you´d like to loose YOUR job based on a simple accusation? Life, my dear, is rarely simple.

    @5 Okay, looking at it another way, It was alleged that the teacher threatened to ´out´ the kid as being gay, unless the kid wrote a letter to a girl and ´outed himself´ as being gay??? (which the kid apparently then did?

    So the alleged threat was to use the kids natural fear of being labeled as being gay….to get the kid to label himself as being gay? Think about that allegation for a moment.. It´s hardly rocket science to work out the complete idiocy of such a thing?

    As I said, more to this than meets the eye. It was apparently investigated at the time by the school and no action was taken against the teacher. I say again Mr ´hang the teacher´, you would be willing to loose YOUR job based of such an obviously ridiculous story, probably concocted to obtain cash from the school?

  8. BrazilBoysBlog –
    Superficially that sounds right, but analyse the scenario further and what you find is not a kid who decided to out himself to stop himself being outed, but a kid who was faced with a choice… either to write a note to one specific girl explaining he was gay or to have the whole school know about it.
    Basically the lesser of two “evils” would be to out himself to one person he felt he could trust if he was convinced he would be outed to the whole school in any case if he refused to comply.
    The “blackmailing the school” hypothesis is your own assertion.
    I agree that there is probably more to this story than we’re getting here, but why bother concocting this convoluted “outing” story when the tried and tested molestation lie has been used to wreck teaching careers by vindictive kids for decades?
    I wouldn’t like to put money on it, but given the info as it stands I’m believing the kid slightly more than the teacher. Not to mention the whole arm-twisting incident, which hardly makes him look like a trustworthy guy in the first place.
    The only other scenario in which your version of events might sound plausible to me is if the kid voluntarily outed himself, then got cold feet and tried to make out that he was forced to do it against his will.
    But again, I’d need to know more details here, as it seems like something is missing.

  9. BrazilBoysBlog 13 Mar 2010, 8:19pm

    @ Flapjack Sorry but what ´Blackmailing the school´ are you talking about? I never mentioned blackmailing the school, (as an assertion or otherwise) I mentioned a civil action against either the school, or the teacher himself.. This is not an ´assertion´of mine, it is mentioned in the article! They are suing someone! And what prey tell is the usual reason for suing someone? Cash? Okay, there goes to motive.

    I still find it very hard to believe that the kid would put it into writing that he was gay, when he was not. That he would risk the girl telling everyone in the school that he was gay (which she did) and all because some teacher threatened to ´out him´´?

    Is it not also possible that the kid confided in this girl that he was gay, she told the rest of the school, then the kid made up the story that a ´teacher made him do it´, rather than admit the letter was true? What I am saying is, there is far more to this ridiculous story (that the Department of Education investigated and found no wrongdoing), to be all shouting ´hang the teacher´?

  10. The teacher in question says on his blog:

    1. All of the claims made against me have been reviewed at length by the Office of Special Investigations and I was cleared unequivocally of all charges.

    2. My heart and deep concern goes out to the child involved whose parent has made the questionable choice of publishing his name and associating him to this slander.

    But some of you are more or less screaming ‘burn the witch’. I wonder where that response comes from ?

  11. Very strange and disturbing story.

    The teacher should get fired.

    And a 9 year old who ‘identifies as straight’ should not be held to that identity.

    He’s a child. He’s not an adult and who knows what his sexual orientation will be.

  12. Simon M, why are you saying the teacher should be fired when:

    1. On the basis of an investigation by the Office of Special Investigations he was cleared
    2. He left the job anyway, so what’s to be fired from, and
    3. If you think the current civil court case (quite possibly an attempt by the parents to get money) should go ahead, then at the very least you should want the hearing before anyone gets “fired”.

    Sadly, there’s no penalty for the parents if they are doing this to extract cash; only the ex-teacher gets hurt, only the school can lose money. Not a fair process.

  13. SimonM: “He’s a child. He’s not an adult and who knows what his sexual orientation will be.”

    I think that is a sweeping generalisation. I know of many gay guys that knew their sexuality as young as five. Just because they are not sexually active does not mean they don’t know their sexual identity.

    As for blackmailing the school, I know there are some evil little bastards around that do this, but I just think this is too complex and engineered to be dreamt up, let alone had the guts to implement, a story such as this. Unfortunately it’s a professional’s word versus a small boy, so it really isn’t going to happen unless there is any real evidence.

  14. “I know there are some evil little bastards around that do this, but I just think this is too complex and engineered to be dreamt up, let alone had the guts to implement, a story such as this.”
    RobN – That’s my point in a nutshell!
    Whether it’s blackmail or simply extorting money, I honestly can’t see a 9 year old kid concocting this story (unless his parents put him up to it, which still seems dubius knowing the flak he’d bring on himself). There are many easier bogus accusations to make.
    In this country he’d only have to trip over a paving stone and he could make a dent in the school’s next annual budget.

  15. It’s all just speculation but my first thought when I read this is that a gay kid wrote to a girl, told her he was gay and then when it got out said his teacher told him to do it to clear his name. The fact that he’s 9 and no doubt terrified of his parent’s reaction meant that it went too far. For the kid’s (and the teacher’s) sake I hope i’m wrong.

  16. pixelgoddess 15 Mar 2010, 2:30pm

    I’m thinking this all comes down to the parents. Did their son come out to them, or do they suspect he is gay and they don’t approve? Blame it on the teacher and then anything the son says is called into question and gives them the opportunity to deny it.

    We’re never going to know the truth, but it’s sad that outing someone is viewed as a threat either by the family or by the media. (And the child’s name should never have been released – even if the parents approved it, the media should have risen above that and done what they could to protect him.)

  17. Yet again, exposing somebody as ‘gay’ is used as a threat, because being thought of as gay is to be thought of as inferior or broken or less than a man. (or boy in this case!) If there wasn’t this perception among straights that ‘gay’ is ‘bad’ this couldn’t be used as a weapon. This is the fight to be fought.

  18. This teacher twisted one child’s arm because he didn’t like the way the child was going up the stairs, then he made sexual comments to another child and assaulted him. The article shows the parents try to resolve this situation with the school. Why was this issue not resolved? Why did it escalate? If this teacher is so innocent why did he resign???? How thoroughly was this teacher investigated by the special investigations unit? I really don’t think these parents were seeking for money it seems they were seeking a solution. In the article it says that the school staff and administration condoned what this teacher did both times. How much of an asset was this teacher to this charter school????? Lots of questions…… To me the teacher sounds fake and pathetic when in the article he addresses his concerns for the child. I wonder how many other children this teacher hurt. The article states he did it twice, but did he really only do it twice? or are there others????

  19. Pumpkin Pie 15 Mar 2010, 9:03pm

    If this teacher is so innocent why did he resign????

    Because all you need is an allegation to ruin your career. Both allegations were just that: unproven allegations. Even teachers who are found to be innocent tend to lose their jobs, too.

    I came to the same conclusion that Tonkatsu (15) did. Boy outs himself to girl, girl turns on him, boy blames it on teacher he doesn’t like instead. I agree with flapjack that it is a fairly odd accusation when good ol’ molestation could have been used, but then I disagree with flapjack for the exact same reason. It’s utterly ridiculous. Why would anyone possibly do such a thing? Why just force him to tell this one person? Just sounds like a bunch of lies to me.

  20. @ Pumpkin Pie – I did say back at the end of post 8 that your version of events might seem like a plausible alternative.
    The only conclusion I can draw from it is that we’re missing some vital pieces of this story and filling the gaps with speculation. Maybe the best response under the circumstances is to keep an open mind until we know more.

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