Friday, August 26, 2016

CCSD Disrespects Teachers' Role Model in HaLevi

Septima P. Clark Corporate Academy Sign

Do you have any idea of what someone like Andrew HaLevi must handle every day at a school such as Clark Academy? The insults and curses hurled at teachers in an ordinary classroom pale in comparison. Yet HaLevi succeeded as director for eight years before being dismissed over a minor incident concerning slacks loaned to a student whose dress HaLevi deemed too short.

If I were HaLevi, I would be happy teaching English at Stall instead; however, from watching his career over the last decade or so, I'm confident that HaLevi seeks out those students (such as at Clark Academy) who need help the most. 

Clark's loss is Stall's gain. Still. 

Here's the other side of the story.
An investigator with the district’s Department of Employee Relations interviewed HaLevi on April 25, according to the report. But HaLevi said all he was allowed to do was review a written statement he had already given.
“I was not presented with any evidence, did not have the opportunity to challenge any accusations and was not allowed to appeal the decision,” HaLevi said.
Steve Liverani, who worked alongside HaLevi for five years as a student support specialist with Communities in Schools, was one person who spoke to the investigators about the incident.
“I can’t stress enough that I never once saw an inappropriate interaction between Dr. HaLevi and a student,” Liverani said in a phone interview Thursday. “I was really impressed that he could remain calm when literally everyone else around him was not.”
He also said that after news of the accusations made it into the media, he reached out to district staff wanting to provide more information. 
“I never got a response back on that request,” Liverani said. 
HaLevi’s personnel file, which he provided to The Post and Courier to review, includes only one reprimand from 21 years of service. In June 2014, an associate superintendent wrote to express “disappointment” that HaLevi had not punished students who were suspected of making racist comments and threats toward HaLevi. According to HaLevi, he had found an unsigned note in the trash calling him a “dumb Jew” and saying, “I hope the Nazi’s Come for you.” 
In a written response to his supervisor, HaLevi said that while he had spoken with three students about the note, there was “not enough evidence” to prove their guilt. 
“My written response, included in the personnel file, reflects my deep commitment to fairness and due process,” HaLevi said. “This is a commitment that the district has failed to show in my case.”
The disrespectful student's uncle, who happens to be on a constituent school board, demands that CCSD fire HaLevi. That student was both verbally abusive to HaLevi and irresponsible for not returning the slacks nor explaining the situation before the trouble occurred. Her uncle need to reprimand her for her lack of respect to one who has earned it. Perhaps the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

Does it make me a racist to wonder if HaLevi had been black, the outcome would have been the same? His replacement is. Based on past actions, it appears that HaLevi will continue to work diligently for the good of students.

I would call the Anti-Defamation League.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Why anyone would care to work in administration for such a bureaucratic dysfunctional school district is beyond my comprehension. He is too good for CCSD.