Should a teacher be able to be suspended for comments he makes on his own time outside of school?
A former “Teacher of the Year” in Mount Dora, Fla. has been suspended and could lose his job after he voiced his objection to gay marriage on his personal Facebook page.
Jerry Buell, a veteran American history teacher at Mount Dora High School, was removed from his teaching duties this week as school officials in Lake County investigate allegations that what he posted was biased towards homosexuals.
“We took the allegations seriously,” said Chris Patton, a communication officer with Lake County Schools. “All teachers are bound by a code of special ethics (and) this is a code ethics violation investigation.”
Patton said the school system received a complaint on Tuesday about something Buell had written last July when New York legalized same sex unions. On Wednesday, he was temporarily suspended from the classroom and reassigned.
Patton said Buell has taught in the school system for 22 years and has a spotless record. Last year, he was selected as the high school’s “Teacher of the Year.”
But now his job is on the line because of what some have called anti-gay and homophobic comments.
Buell told Fox News Radio that he was stunned by the accusations. “It was my own personal comment on my own personal time on my own personal computer in my own personal house, exercising what I believed as a social studies teacher to be my First Amendment rights,” he said.
Full story and his comments here
Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/08/19/florida-teacher-suspended-for-anti-gay-marriage-post-on-personal-facebook/#ixzz1VV8FumR1