CPS Calls Teacher Misconduct Story A "Gross Distortion"

Patrick Rocks and James Sullivan write below to refute the recent story that ran about CPS employees being allowed to run free after being accused of misconduct.

Read the full letter by clicking below.

What's your experience -- is this a big problem or a minor one?

December 6, 2007

Dear Editor:

Your Dec. 2 story regarding the Chicago Public Schools' practices involving school district employees accused of misconduct is a gross distortion of reality. On the very rare occasions when our employees are accused of misconduct, we do a very thorough and careful job of investigating the allegation, disciplining the employee and following through with law enforcement when appropriate, and disclosing information about such cases in accordance with the law and the employees' right to confidentiality in their personnel records.

The Chicago Public Schools' Office of the Inspector General releases an annual report of the investigations that it has conducted during the year--on employee misconduct, vendor fraud, residency issues, and other matters of board policy. That office and that annual report exist because we take very seriously our responsibility to ensure that our employees are acting in the best interest of our children and their families, and that our taxpayers' dollars are not being misused.

And it is that Inspector General's report--which very few school districts compile, much less make public--that was the basis for the story that your reporter did. We were as forthcoming as the law allows with subsequent information that was requested through the Freedom of Information Act, and we've followed up with the Illinois Attorney General's Office to ensure that we're handling these matters properly.

The CPS is deeply committed to living up to our responsibility of sharing public information with our taxpayers, to holding our employees accountable to high standards of professional and personal conduct, and to holding ourselves accountable for protecting and serving the educational needs of our children.

Sincerely,

Patrick Rocks

General Counsel

Chicago Public Schools

James Sullivan

Inspector General

Chicago Public Schools

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