When school administrations learn of sexual misconduct allegations against a teacher, they often act quickly to protect their students – even while the case is under investigation. That's the scenario at one Honolulu high school that terminated a teacher's employment after learning about sexual misconduct allegations.
A former student alleges that the teacher committed multiple sexual misconduct and school violations against them during their years at Punahou High School.
Shortly after the allegations surfaced, Punahou school administrators suspended the teacher, forbidding them from being on campus or communicating with students. In a statement, school President Michael Latham mentioned that the allegations were substantial but that no other students came forward.
The teacher, who remains unnamed due to a lack of legal charges against them, no longer works at the school.
High School Teachers
Sexual misconduct charges against high school teachers significantly impact their careers and reputation. Teachers who work with children cannot use willful participation as a defense strategy. Since high school students are usually minors, a teacher convicted of sexual misconduct can receive:
- A felony offense
- Criminal record
- Lifetime registration as a sex offender
Such long-term implications can have a detrimental effect on reputation and quality of life, even when untrue. Because schools have a duty to report sexual misconduct to appropriate authorities in addition to conducting their own internal Title IX investigation, the necessary precautions must be taken by high school teachers who find themselves accused of wrongdoing. Without an aggressive defense strategy that challenges what can be an unfair Title IX process and also the prosecution's proof if criminal charges are filed, an educator's career can be over from one allegation.
Allegations Against College Professors
Colleges and universities have a segment in their code of conduct handbook relating to Title IX procedures or a separate Title IX policy altogether. Although college professors and other college employees won't undergo a criminal investigation for a sexual harassment or misconduct charge brought under Title IX, the case will impact their career and leave them with limited options if they are found responsible.
Colleges often have a code of conduct that outlines the reporting process if students want to file a sexual misconduct report against a professor, athletic coach, and other employees. College professors and employees may be governed in part by these policies, but also their employment policies and contracts. Depending on the investigation results, the professor may be reinstated, or if deemed appropriate, terminated. Some alleged victims will also file a lawsuit against the alleged perpetrator, be it their professor, coach, or otherwise, and also their college if they are not satisfied with the investigation results.
Accused students, known as respondents in Title IX proceedings, are held to a high level of accountability, and college professors and employees are held to a great level of accountability yet when sexual harassment and sexual misconduct allegations are made. For this reason, in addition to the unfortunate fact that you can never depend on the school to do the right without the necessary oversight, college employees must take all necessary precautions when accused of anything improper.
Ultimately, college professors must build a meticulous defense strategy with an attorney-advisor to reduce the impact of Title IX violations. It's not just about dismissal from their current job; there's a real chance that they'll lose their career as an educator permanently. Other colleges are less likely to hire a college professor with a sexual harassment charge on their record.
Call the Lento Law Firm for Nationwide Sexual Misconduct Defense
If you face a sexual misconduct charge as a school teacher or university professor, you have a right to defend yourself against these harmful allegations. Even if you are innocent, lack of proof can lead to negative consequences that upend your career and damage your reputation.
Attorney-Advisor Joseph D. Lento passionately fights for your rights and works in your best interests for the best possible case outcome.
You don't have to lose years of hard work and derail your career due to a misunderstanding or a bogus allegation. Call the Lento Law Firm today at (888) 535 – 3686 for a confidential and thorough case consultation.