A Staten Island teacher was given a federal court ruling to allow her lawsuit against the New York City Department of Education to continue. The teacher was suspended after allowing students to use sexually explicit language within the classroom as the class discussed HIV/AIDS.
The teacher, Faith Kramer, was expelled for eight months for allowing the students to discuss sex openly in the classroom. Kramer has 26 years of experience in the teaching field. She held tenure at the school. Parents were outraged when they learned that the teacher had allowed such a conversation to take place. The school district required her to sit out eight months of teaching in one of the infamous “rubber rooms“, which have since been shut down.
The ruling from Judge Jack Weinstein was lengthy. It contained some 67 pages of text and even included an appendix of the terms that the students used during the classroom discussion. Many of those terms were explicit and were slang terms. The attorneys representing the school stated that those specific terms were not suitable for use within a school setting.
Within his notes regarding his decision to allow the case to go forward, Weinstein stated, “Executing such a task would require great sensitivity, skill, commitment, and not a little courage…Based on the regulation, this teacher ought never to have been removed from the classroom.” His statement was in reference to the way that the teacher interacted with the students, in that she treated the students as adults throughout the conversation.
Kramer has filed a $1 million lawsuit against the school district for their decision to suspend her. The funds also cover lost wages and embarrassment.