A state appeals court has upheld the dismissal of a San Diego schoolteacher who was fired for posting a sexually explicit ad and photos in the "men seeking men" section of Craigslist.
Frank Lampedusa's firing had been overruled by a state commission that said the ad was unrelated to his ability to teach middle-school students. But the appeals court disagreed, saying Lampedusa's conduct showed he was unfit to teach and "serve as a role model" for his students.
A teacher's private life can constitute grounds for dismissal if it demonstrates "indecency and moral indifference," said the Fourth District Court of Appeal in San Diego. The court issued the 3-0 ruling last month and published it Tuesday as a statewide precedent for future cases.
I consider this a travesty. Whose morals and what morality, especially in California? I addressed this just 2-1/2 months ago, and the same scenarios I presented in that post cry out for answers in light of the current ruling.
The guy was seeking a consenting adult with whom he could participate in an entirely legal activity--and for this he was fired. It's been ruled that his behavior makes him ineligible to be a role model; is the only "good" gay a "celibate" gay? I've read scores of comments, and many indicate that the problem was his posting a picture. If he hadn't posted a picture of his face, but emailed it before meeting, would he still be fired? I guess my question is, what was the immoral behavior? Was it placing the ad, in which case government-decided morality would be that he should remain celibate, or was it the posting of a picture in public?
Again, my belief is that absent inappropriate classroom conduct or conduct clearly related to teaching children, what teachers do in their off-duty time is, for the most part, of no business to anyone else.
I continue to be floored by the idiocy around this issue. I'm going to take to wearing a halo when I get back to work.