EDUCATION POLITICS-A reliable source has stated that falsely charged LAUSD teacher Rafe Esquith (photo left) has predictably been fired by a unanimous vote of the LAUSD Board of Directors in closed session. This is without any verified charges, made under penalty of perjury, as is required by applicable Education Codes and fundamental notions of due process of law.
Throughout the process, as one charge after another has been made against Esquith and then found to be completely false, LAUSD administrators have continued to add charges. The logical question of why these charges weren’t brought in a timely manner before is something that has been scrupulously ignored by LAUSD administrators and their high priced lawyers who’ve gone after Esquith and any other teacher that LAUSD administrators decide to target.
The media never mentions that each time the LAUSD gets rid of a teacher like Esquith, it saves approximately $60,000 in salary and benefits just in the first year. This would actually be a logical reason why Esquith and thousands of other top-of-the-salary-scale teachers have been targeted and removed on clearly false charges.
What makes matters worse in the Esquith case is that he refused to just roll over as so many targeted teachers have done in the past – mostly because they had neither the money nor the will to stand up against a multi-billion dollar behemoth like LAUSD.
Esquith engaged the firm of Geragos & Geragos. They have the bank to play in this high stakes legal game where Esquith and many of the more than 1000 other teachers have been targeted on false charges seem to be ready to fight. These teachers have finally found an advocate willing to go toe-to-toe with the District and its allies at the state and federal level who are bent on saddling public education with a system where seasoned higher-priced veteran teachers like Esquith are a burden.
But the bottom line is that, in the face of the Geragos class action suit filed against LAUSD, they had to fire Esquith now, since to do otherwise would allow evidence to surface that Esquith and other targeted teachers have been arbitrarily and capriciously fired without justification. In the inimitable LAUSD style, firing Esquith at this time only kicks the legal can down the road – hopefully to a time when the present group of criminals running LAUSD will have finally retired.
(Leonard Isenberg is a Los Angeles observer and a contributor to CityWatch. He’s a second generation teacher at LAUSD and blogs at perdaily.com. Leonard can be reached at Lenny@perdaily.com) Edited for CityWatch by Linda Abrams.
Vol 13 Issue 84
Pub: Oct 16, 2015