Bad behavior: More teacher revocations could be coming

Interim Superintendent Craven says more teachers may lose their licenses in revocation process.
Interim Superintendent Craven says more teachers may lose their licenses in revocation process.

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - "I thought those particular instances seemed to be egregious."

While he believes Dr. Joe Morton's reasons for revoking teaching licenses are valid, Carver High School PTSA President William Ashbourne isn't shocked by them.

"Anywhere you are we have people that are unscrupulous and have low moral standards and exist in all segments of our society."

Recently, an Alabama Education Association executive scolded retiring school superintendent Joe Morton for the number of teaching certificate revocations on his watch.

But newly appointed interim state school Superintendent Larry Craven says it's the bad teachers and others the state board is trying to get out of schools.

"When we identify the bad apples out there that we need to do everything possible as quickly as possible to remove those kind of employees from our school system," says Craven.

He admits, though, incidents like the ones Dr. Morton described--drunk bus drivers, and teachers having sex in the classroom during school, are common.

"Regrettably, we continue to see those kinds of cases over and over again. We average 15 cases a month presented to our review committee," says Craven.

He says not all of those cases end in revocation.

But just knowing this kind of behavior happens regularly in schools worries parents like Ashbourne.

"I don't want those teachers in my classroom."

Craven understands the concern, but believes the new Students First law, or SB310 will help school systems weed out bad teachers without being forced to work around parts of the state's tenure law.

"I think you'll see an opportunity for greater number of actions to be taken. It will allow those cases just to come forward. We'll know about them and be able to take action against their certificate where appropriate."

Craven says there are some behaviors that cause employees to automatically lose their jobs and their licenses.

Those include things like sexual crimes, murder or other felonies.

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