A Florida math teacher dismissed for allegedly calling at-risk students the N-word may be rehired after a judge said her dismissal breached a union contract.
Joyce Quiller, 51, was dismissed from Jean Ribault High School in Jacksonville in February after working there for 21 years.
School officials claimed that she called students the N-word, “stupid” and “ignorant.” Since 2001, she was reportedly given three warnings for using foul language with students.
In July, a judge ruled that the Duval School District breached her union contract by immediately terminating her and not following the three-step approach to investigate the claims.
The judge said that under her contract, she should have been suspended without pay while an investigation was conducted.
"The School Board skipped step three and went directly to termination even though, if the allegations were true, they would have amounted to what is considered a minor offense,” Quiller's legal consultant Reginald Luster told WJXT.
"(It was) not some type of severe misconduct on behalf of Ms Quiller," he added. "It does not warrant the termination."
The school board will meet next week to discuss the possibility of rehiring her.
If the board does not approve the judge’s recommended order, Quiller could still appeal her termination.
Quiller has denied allegations that she used inappropriate language with students.
“The administrative judge found that the majority of those allegations were not credible at all and my client has denied using that particular language,” Luster said.
Image source: Wikimedia Commons / frwl, Florida Newslocker