Los Angeles schools Superintendent John Deasy has told the Miramonte elementary school that it must dismiss its entire staff after two teachers were arrested over allegations of lewd acts involving photographing nearly two dozen children.
The drastic move is thought to be an attempt to instil confidence back into the district, which has been rocked by the news that instructors at the neighborhood elementary school were arrested over allegations of sex crimes.
Officials stressed that while no other teachers at the 1,500 student school is under suspicion, it has taken the decision to dismiss the entire 150 staff. It is thought that their positions will be filled by interim staff for the immediate future and the displaced staff will be continue to be paid and receive counseling over the events.
Teachers union officials said:
“We support a thorough, vigorous and fair investigation of all allegations. It’s everyone’s responsibility to ensure that any and all allegations are thoughtfully and carefully investigated.”
This comes after Deasy confirmed that a second teacher has been pulled from Miramonte Elementary School after accusations were made against him, reports MSNBC.
Deasy told the Los Angeles Times:
“A new allegation came to our attention yesterday, and we referred the allegation to the sheriff.
“We removed the teacher from the classroom and the matter is being investigated, like when any matter comes to our attention. There is no determination from the authorities, and the person could be completely innocent.”
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Capt. Mike Parker confirmed that Martin B. Springer, 49, of Alhambra was arrested last week and is being held on $2 million bail.
While the cases aren’t thought to be connected, the allegations have sent a chill down the spine of the nation and shaken its second-largest school district. Deasy revealed that since the original charging of Mark Berndt last week, many more complaints of teacher molestation have been received.
Berndt, a teacher for over 30 years, was arrested earlier this week after authorities were notified by a film processing technician of 40 lewd photographs involving children.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has revealed that a former teacher tied up and gagged 23 children, put cockroaches in their mouths and posed in photos with them – all in his classroom.
After the revelation, several parents took their children out of school.
Ida Santana, who has a nephew at the school, said:
“It’s hard to leave our kids here.
“We can’t trust the teachers no more. Now there’s another teacher.”
Santana went on to explain that the family is unsure where the boy will be going to school from now on.
MSNBC’s report suggested that many other parents could be seen walking youngsters away from the school.