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African Teachers  Association-USA


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African Teachers  Association-USA


2510 Hamilton Avenue ,Baltimore , MD 21214 .Tel: 443-744-5328

Home OVERSEAS JOBS Teaching & Learning Job Opportunities Parents & Students Forum News About Us Join ATA

Facing down false accusations

One student, one accusation, and a teacher’s life is changed forever.

What to Do if the Unthinkable Happens

Even if you follow the advice in this publication, there’s no guarantee that you won’t be the victim of false alle­gations. And if that happens, here are some suggestions about what to do and what not to do:

First, call your Association representative. Depending on the local, that person may be a building representa­tive, the Association president, or a UniServ director. Your Association representative can provide advice and help you obtain legal representation under various Association programs. (See “Did you know…” below.)

Don’t talk to school administrators or law enforce­ment officers. Even innocent statements can be mis­construed and misused. The decision whether to meet with these officials and what, if anything, to say to them should be made only after consulting with your legal and/or other Association representative. In most

circumstances, your representative should accompany you to any meeting.

Don’t sign anything. It goes without saying that this will be an enormously stressful time, and you should not make any decision about signing a statement or other document without first discussing it with your representative.

Don’t talk to the media, unless and until you and your representative decide that it is in your best interest to do so.

Don’t resign from your job. No matter how bad things look, resigning will not help, and it may be interpreted as an admission of guilt. You should not consider this option until you have consulted with your representative.

Did you know.…

One of the benefits provided by NEA and your state Association is job rights protection under the Kate Frank/DuShane Unified Legal Services Program (ULSP). The ULSP is a jointly sponsored NEA and state affiliate program that provides appropriate legal assistance to members who are subjected to discipline or discharge by their employer.

But did you also know that NEA provides two other important benefits that may be available to members who are falsely accused? Some cases involving very serious allegations can result in crimi­nal charges being filed against you and may require you to retain a criminal defense attorney. If the charges arise in the course of your employment and you are fully exonerated or all the charges are dropped, then the NEA Educators Employment Liability (EEL) Program will reimburse you up to $35,000 for attorneys’ fees.

(Note: If the criminal charges are limited to corporal punish­ment, there is reimbursement even if you are not exonerated.) Be sure to contact your state Association before retaining a criminal defense attorney. Your state Association may be able to recommend a reputable attorney who has experience with child abuse cases.

You also might be sued for damages by the alleged victim and/or the parents. Under the EEL Program, all NEA members are covered for claims up to $1 million in civil lawsuits against them for damages and attorneys’ fees arising out of their employ­ment activities. The policy kicks in after any insurance available through the school district, and is subject to several exclusions. Check with your state Association for additional information about the scope of coverage under the EEL Program