A Mississippi teachers’ assistant claims she was wrongfully terminated by the Meridian Public School District after she reported another abusive teacher, according to the ClairionLedger.com. Rachel Bourrage, hired as a teacher’s assistant at Parkview Elementary School in October 2008, officially filed a wrongful termination lawsuit in November in Hinds County Circuit Court.
Bourrage alleges that she complained to administration about another teacher who would either neglect or abuse students and often take pills and “zone out” and leave the teacher’s assistants in charge of the classes. Reported abuse by the teacher included striking students, screaming at them, locking them in a bathroom or forcing them to stand in an isolated corner for hours at a time and often poking them in the forehead. Bourrage alleges the teacher mostly picked on the black students.
The lawsuit alleges that the teacher would frequently take prescription medications, and students would find various pills scattered throughout the classroom and bring them to the teacher. Bourrage attempted to intervene on the abuse, only to be reassigned to another teacher. Bourrage was fired shortly after for her “unprofessional behavior.” She is seeking damages and back pay.
Employees who report behavior like this should be commended, not punished. The inaction displayed by the Meridian Public School District is inexcusable. Workers reporting illegal activity are free from all retaliation from employers under whistlerblower protection laws. Please contact our firm for a free consultation.
Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob—Los Angeles wrongful termination attorney