Thursday, July 30, 2009

DOE Uses Immigration Law to Fire Tenured Teacher Who Won Disciplinary Hearing

O.K., say you're an immigrant from Jamaica attracted by a teaching opportunity in New York City where you are promised DOE sponsorship for a visa and ultimate legal residency. Now you teach for several years, acquire tenure, and you are brought up on disciplinary charges. You have your hearing and the arbitrator suspends you for three months and orders that you get some sensitivity training before you go back to teaching. Just when you are getting your life back together the DOE terminates you because they withdrew the immigration sponsorship application and claim you are now an undocumented alien, no longer entitled to be in the United States much less teach.

That is exactly what happened to Nurchett Brown.

Brown had no recourse with immigration since the DOE withdrew its petition but she believed that her dismissal was in violation of Education Law which clearly states that tenured teachers cannot be dismissed without a full hearing. So she appealed to New York County Supreme Court.

The matter was referred to Justice Eileen Rakower who affirmed the dismissal. Brown v. Board of Education, New York County Supreme Court, Index No. 102678/2009, decision dated July 22, 2009.

Rakower was unmoved by Brown's situation and found that the DOE did not act arbitrarily or capriciously in dismissing her since, while suspended, technically she did not meet the requirements of the immigration law and that DOE "had no choice" but to withdraw its sponsorship.

1 comment:

Chaz said...

I wrote about this problem in my blog