Teacher fired for threatening to lower grade after student’s mother asks about lesson plans
August 18, 2017
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Tenure charges were brought against Richard Allen after he wrote in an email on May 6, 2016, that he would lower a student’s grade to an F in retaliation for her mother’s questions about his lesson plans, the 48-page report on the tenure charges showed.

Allen also wrote “F*** you” in an email to his supervisor, Karen Batista, and shared confidential information about his students with his wife in a series of emails, many containing disparaging remarks about them, according to the 13 charges brought against him.

Arbitrator Joyce Klein wrote in her June 7 decision that while Allen’s popularity among students “might serve to reduce the penalty for most of the proven charges,” his threat to lower a student’s grade in retaliation means “there is no basis for the board (of education), parents or students to trust him as a teacher in the future.”

Allen was suspended with pay on May 9, 2016, and appeared at a May 16, 2016, board meeting where, at his request, the board meet in open session to discuss his future with the district. Allen apologized at the meeting for his actions, attended by many supporters, who also wrote letters on his behalf, according to the arbitrator’s report. Tenure charges followed the meeting.

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