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mnodonnell

David Paszkiewicz should be fired

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I realize that this issue is old, and, as a result of the legal settlement, supposedly resolved.

However, I am shocked that this man is still teaching in any public school setting. I am stunned that the town where I grew up and the high school where I was educated would allow this to happen.

The logistics of the recording and the popularity of Mr. Paszkiewicz are irrelevant. Divorce yourself from the personal passions inherent to the case and consider that the teacher in question:

- Abused a position of authority to advance his personal beliefs;

- displayed incompetence for his position as evidenced by his teaching on science and ignorance of the U.S. Constitution; and

- by virtue of his personal beliefs, made his students uncomfortable in their own ethics and mortality.

This is grounds for immediate dismissal of Mr. Paszkiewicz. Further, the Board of Education's mishandling of the matter should call their own positions into question.

I am not some liberal outsider swooping in to offer a tongue-lashing to the residents of Kearny. I am a concerned alumnus of Kearny High School that realizes, had the events taken place 12 years earlier, I could have been caught in this crossfire.

Sincerely,

Michael O'Donnell

KHS '95

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This is grounds for immediate dismissal of Mr. Paszkiewicz.  Further, the Board of Education's mishandling of the matter should call their own positions into question.

I couldn't agree more but do you really think the BOE will ever admit the incompetence of one of their own? I graduated almost 20 years before you and the incompetence of some teachers back was something good old ** ***** would refuse to address.

KOTW Note: The above post was edited for content.

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Leaving aside the logistics of getting Pasziewicz fired (which O'Donnell apparently hasn't had time to seriously contemplate) ...

Divorce yourself from the personal passions inherent to the case and consider that the teacher in question:

- Abused a position of authority to advance his personal beliefs;

What personal belief do you think was advanced, Mr. O'Donnell?

- displayed incompetence for his position as evidenced by his teaching on science and ignorance of the U.S. Constitution; and

What evidence of ignorance of science and/or the Constitution do you think Mr. Paszkiewicz evidenced, Mr. O'Donnell?

- by virtue of his personal beliefs, made his students uncomfortable in their own ethics and mortality.

How did he supposedly do that?

This is grounds for immediate dismissal of Mr. Paszkiewicz.

One would think that you had never encountered a labor union.

Further, the Board of Education's mishandling of the matter should call their own positions into question.

I am not some liberal outsider swooping in to offer a tongue-lashing to the residents of Kearny.  I am a concerned alumnus of Kearny High School that realizes, had the events taken place 12 years earlier, I could have been caught in this crossfire.

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Liberal insider. :lol:

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What personal belief do you think was advanced, Mr. O'Donnell?

The belief that Jesus Christ is humankind's personal lord and savior, and the only path to eternal salvation. See John 3:16.

What evidence of ignorance of science and/or the Constitution do you think Mr. Paszkiewicz evidenced, Mr. O'Donnell?

Regarding science: placing dinosaurs (or anything, for that matter) on Noah's Ark. Injecting religious scripture into a public high school curriculum would be a violation of the Constitution's Establishment Clause.

How did he supposedly do that?

I think it's safe to say that Matthew LaClair as not comfortable in Mr. Paszkiewicz's classroom. Suggesting that Muslim's will go to hell for their beliefs could potentially make some Muslim students uncomfortable.

Liberal insider.

Concerned rationalist.

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The belief that Jesus Christ is humankind's personal lord and savior, and the only path to eternal salvation.  See John 3:16.

So you're saying that by just offering John 3:16 as his opinion on the matter that therefore he was advancing that belief? Your view of the matter appears to differ from that of the ADL.

Regarding science: placing dinosaurs (or anything, for that matter) on Noah's Ark.

Respecting the ark, all Paszkiewicz did was answer a student's question about whether or not he believed that there dinosaurs on the ark. Should we quiz prospective teachers on that point before hiring them, or do you think that might be unconstitutional?

Injecting religious scripture into a public high school curriculum would be a violation of the Constitution's Establishment Clause.

It would be if it were a violation of the Establishment Clause, but there's nothing wrong with having the Bible as a topic of conversation in class per se. Public schools can and do offer Bible courses, for example. Indeed, banning the Bible from class discussion would appear to be flatly unconstitutional. Are you all for it? :lol:

I think it's safe to say that Matthew LaClair as not comfortable in Mr. Paszkiewicz's classroom.

You certainly might think so, but you would not have answered my question.

Suggesting that Muslim's will go to hell for their beliefs could potentially make some Muslim students uncomfortable.

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How about a quotation? If Paszkiewicz is to be fired it should be for something that he actually said rather than something he could potentially say, right?

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I realize that this issue is old, and, as a result of the legal settlement, supposedly resolved.

However, I am shocked that this man is still teaching in any public school setting.  I am stunned that the town where I grew up and the high school where I was educated would allow this to happen.

The logistics of the recording and the popularity of Mr. Paszkiewicz are irrelevant.  Divorce yourself from the personal passions inherent to the case and consider that the teacher in question:

- Abused a position of authority to advance his personal beliefs;

- displayed incompetence for his position as evidenced by his teaching on science and ignorance of the U.S. Constitution; and

- by virtue of his personal beliefs, made his students uncomfortable in their own ethics and mortality.

This is grounds for immediate dismissal of Mr. Paszkiewicz.  Further, the Board of Education's mishandling of the matter should call their own positions into question.

I am not some liberal outsider swooping in to offer a tongue-lashing to the residents of Kearny.  I am a concerned alumnus of Kearny High School that realizes, had the events taken place 12 years earlier, I could have been caught in this crossfire.

Sincerely,

Michael O'Donnell

KHS '95

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I feel the same way. Even without considering the whole preaching fiasco, the fact that he made public statements displaying an appalling level of ignorance in the very subject he's supposed to be teaching, is enough for me to say that he's not fit for the job.

Should history revisionists (especially the kind who see nothing unconstitutional about using their desk as a pulpit in class) really be the kind of people getting paid to teach history in public school?

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Liberal insider;)

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You know, the association of 'Christian' with 'conservative' is a bit off-putting. Not everyone who values keeping God out of government and vice versa is liberal. For that matter, not all Christians are against the idea. But hey, I'm sure nothing bad could possibly happen by Republicans alienating part of their support. It isn't like they lost any ground in the last election.

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I realize that this issue is old, and, as a result of the legal settlement, supposedly resolved.

However, I am shocked that this man is still teaching in any public school setting.  I am stunned that the town where I grew up and the high school where I was educated would allow this to happen.

The logistics of the recording and the popularity of Mr. Paszkiewicz are irrelevant.  Divorce yourself from the personal passions inherent to the case and consider that the teacher in question:

- Abused a position of authority to advance his personal beliefs;

- displayed incompetence for his position as evidenced by his teaching on science and ignorance of the U.S. Constitution; and

- by virtue of his personal beliefs, made his students uncomfortable in their own ethics and mortality.

This is grounds for immediate dismissal of Mr. Paszkiewicz.  Further, the Board of Education's mishandling of the matter should call their own positions into question.

I am not some liberal outsider swooping in to offer a tongue-lashing to the residents of Kearny.  I am a concerned alumnus of Kearny High School that realizes, had the events taken place 12 years earlier, I could have been caught in this crossfire.

Sincerely,

Michael O'Donnell

KHS '95

69368[/snapback]

Grow up.

Matthew loves this attention. As a matter of fact he has built up a very nice cottage industry of speaking engagements and scholarships.

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You know, the association of 'Christian' with 'conservative' is a bit off-putting.

Whatever. I didn't talk about Christianity in terms of politics. I just responded to O'Donnell's own label, and I used a smiley along with it to indicate that I was kidding him. Some reactionary types won't care about that. ;)

Not everyone who values keeping God out of government and vice versa is liberal.

Correct. Some misguided libertarians hold the same view.

For that matter, not all Christians are against the idea. But hey, I'm sure nothing bad could possibly happen by Republicans alienating part of their support. It isn't like they lost any ground in the last election.

69453[/snapback]

Take a look at what the Democrats have done with the power they were given and ask yourself if it's an improvement.

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I feel the same way. Even without considering the whole preaching fiasco, the fact that he made public statements displaying an appalling level of ignorance in the very subject he's supposed to be teaching, is enough for me to say that he's not fit for the job. Don't you think?

69426[/snapback]

This post is funny coming from the KOTW member whose alter-ego might as well be Captain Mistaken.

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Grow up.

Matthew loves this attention. As a matter of fact he has built up a very nice cottage industry of speaking engagements and scholarships.

Would you consider my post to be infantile? Perhaps you'll be generous and grant me adolescence.

The matter has nothing to do with any individual's speaking engagements.

Did you have a point to make?

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So you're saying that by just offering John 3:16 as his opinion on the matter that therefore he was advancing that belief? Your view of the matter appears to differ from that of the ADL.

Yes. By offering his opinion in class, about a scriptural belief, he is advancing that belief. If my views differ from the ADL, so be it. I'm not their spokesperson.

Respecting the ark, all Paszkiewicz did was answer a student's question about whether or not he believed that there dinosaurs on the ark. Should we quiz prospective teachers on that point before hiring them, or do you think that might be unconstitutional?

You should not hire pre-calculus teachers that do not understand conic sections and you should not hire history teachers that place dinosaurs on man-made boats.

It would be if it were a violation of the Establishment Clause, but there's nothing wrong with having the Bible as a topic of conversation in class per se. Public schools can and do offer Bible courses, for example. Indeed, banning the Bible from class discussion would appear to be flatly unconstitutional. Are you all for it?

The discussion was not about the Bible -- it was about Jesus and salvation. Aside from discussing its existence and effects on history the Bible has no place in a history class. Events (save a few) in the Bible are not history.

You certainly might think so, but you would not have answered my question.
Paszkiewicz: “He did everything in his power to make sure that you could go to heaven, so much so that he took your sins on his own body, suffered your pains for you, and he’s saying, ‘Please, accept me, believe.’ If you reject that, you belong in hell.”

I do not believe it is a wild logical leap to think that someone who is unsure of their personal religious beliefs would be uncomfortable hearing this in their classroom.

How about a quotation? If Paszkiewicz is to be fired it should be for something that he actually said rather than something he could potentially say, right?

I don't have the quotation, but the NYT article references a specific incident where he stated that a Muslim girl would go to hell. I italicized "potentially" because I am speculating on the specific girl's state of mind.

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Matthew loves this attention.

Would you love having your life threatened? Being ostracized for doing the right thing? Use your head--it's people like you that make him stand out so much. He wouldn't be getting so much attention/awards/etc. if there wasn't such a sharp contrast. People like you made it all happen. Don't forget that.

Anyway, leave Matthew out of the conversation--this is about Paszkiewicz, not him.

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Would you love having your life threatened? Being ostracized for doing the right thing? Use your head--it's people like you that make him stand out so much. He wouldn't be getting so much attention/awards/etc. if there wasn't such a sharp contrast. People like you made it all happen. Don't forget that.

Anyway, leave Matthew out of the conversation--this is about Paszkiewicz, not him.

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Way to go Matthew. It sounds like you now want to sleep with Paszkiewicz. You know that the life threatening thing was just a ploy to get media attention. The sharp contrast is between you and the truth, which the people of this town know you blew so far out of the water.

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Yes. By offering his opinion in class, about a scriptural belief, he is advancing that belief.  If my views differ from the ADL, so be it.  I'm not their spokesperson.

You should not hire pre-calculus teachers that do not understand conic sections and you should not hire history teachers that place dinosaurs on man-made boats.

The discussion was not about the Bible -- it was about Jesus and salvation.  Aside from discussing its existence and effects on history the Bible has no place in a history class.  Events (save a few) in the Bible are not history.

Paszkiewicz: “He did everything in his power to make sure that you could go to heaven, so much so that he took your sins on his own body, suffered your pains for you, and he’s saying, ‘Please, accept me, believe.’ If you reject that, you belong in hell.”

I do not believe it is a wild logical leap to think that someone who is unsure of their personal religious beliefs would be uncomfortable hearing this in their classroom.

I don't have the quotation, but the NYT article references a specific incident where he stated that a Muslim girl would go to hell.  I italicized "potentially" because I am speculating on the specific girl's state of mind.

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Let's not forget that "Mr. P lied is ass of about the whole thing! Why would someone do that if they had done nothing worng? Grounds for dismissal in and of itself.

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I realize that this issue is old, and, as a result of the legal settlement, supposedly resolved.

However, I am shocked that this man is still teaching in any public school setting.  I am stunned that the town where I grew up and the high school where I was educated would allow this to happen.

The logistics of the recording and the popularity of Mr. Paszkiewicz are irrelevant.  Divorce yourself from the personal passions inherent to the case and consider that the teacher in question:

- Abused a position of authority to advance his personal beliefs;

- displayed incompetence for his position as evidenced by his teaching on science and ignorance of the U.S. Constitution; and

- by virtue of his personal beliefs, made his students uncomfortable in their own ethics and mortality.

This is grounds for immediate dismissal of Mr. Paszkiewicz.  Further, the Board of Education's mishandling of the matter should call their own positions into question.

I am not some liberal outsider swooping in to offer a tongue-lashing to the residents of Kearny.  I am a concerned alumnus of Kearny High School that realizes, had the events taken place 12 years earlier, I could have been caught in this crossfire.

Sincerely,

Michael O'Donnell

KHS '95

69368[/snapback]

Michael, this is a very cavalier attitude to take with a family's livelihood. Without getting into the merits of your argument, it is my understanding that the school has never censured, reprimanded or in any way disciplined Mr. P for anything similar to preaching in class. While there has been much speculation about whether he had preached in class prior to this time, as far as his disciplinary record goes, this is the first incident (if anyone has documented proof to the contrary, please advise). Also, given that most people feel that it is impolite to discuss religion with a colleague, I find it to be quite possible that no one took Mr. P aside and suggested that he stop discussing religion in class (assuming that he was prior to such date). So before we lynch Mr. P for discussing religion in a history class, let's give him the benefit of the doubt and believe that Mr. P did not know that his statements could run afoul of the Establishment Clause.

That being said, this was a mistake on his part. And while some may believe that we should be infallible, I - and the teacher's union for sure - believe that people should be allowed to make a mistake (within reason) without losing their jobs and, thus, their family's livelihood. So, while this is a very emotional and polarizing issue, we need to have a sense of calm and proportion when dealing with someone's life in this manner. If you disagree, ask yourself how unforgiving or careless you would want the person who signs your paycheck to be when dealing with a mistake that you make at work.

Look, there's lots of other reasons to be upset with Mr. P for things that occurred AFTER Matthew recorded the class discussion. However, none of the conduct is such that the man's job should have been taken absent a similar, future transgressions about which he's already been warned.

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Yes. By offering his opinion in class, about a scriptural belief, he is advancing that belief.  If my views differ from the ADL, so be it.  I'm not their spokesperson.

The ADL is the organization contracted to instruct Kearny teachers on church/state separation. Perhaps you'll have to have all of them fired after LaClair is done with them. ;)

You should not hire pre-calculus teachers that do not understand conic sections and you should not hire history teachers that place dinosaurs on man-made boats.

So, apparently you're in favor of religious discrimination in government hiring.

And of course what you're dodging is the fact that Paszkiewicz did not teach anything about the ark in any kind of dogmatic fashion. He simply answered a question posed to him by a student, regarding material that would not be tested.

If students don't get tested on conic sections then of what importance is it that a teacher understand them?

The discussion was not about the Bible -- it was about Jesus and salvation.

Then why did you object to Paszkiewicz "injecting religious scripture" (which is the point you made to which I was responding)? Did you type other than what you intended?

Aside from discussing its existence and effects on history the Bible has no place in a history class.  Events (save a few) in the Bible are not history.

So, even though the Bible text had a profound effect on history, as with the Reformation and many other events, you would substantially censor it from the curriculum. Interesting. How are students supposed to understand the effects of the text without any familiarity with the text and the doctrines derived therefrom? Is not the text a part of history? And the developed doctrines? Were not those a part of history?

Paszkiewicz: “He did everything in his power to make sure that you could go to heaven, so much so that he took your sins on his own body, suffered your pains for you, and he’s saying, ‘Please, accept me, believe.’ If you reject that, you belong in hell.”

I do not believe it is a wild logical leap to think that someone who is unsure of their personal religious beliefs would be uncomfortable hearing this in their classroom.

Thus the students' constitutional right not to feel uncomfortable have been abridged?

With the expanded context, it is manifestly obvious that Paszkiewicz was describing a historical doctrine in response to a student's (Matthew LaClair, in this case) question. The day that describing a historical Christian doctrine in the classroom is made illegal by the Constitution is the day that the Constitution has been turned completely on its head.

I don't have the quotation,

I didn't think so.

but the NYT article references a specific incident where he stated that a Muslim girl would go to hell.

And you believed the New York Times. You are a man of faith.

I italicized "potentially" because I am speculating on the specific girl's state of mind.

69476[/snapback]

Her state of mind isn't really relevant if you don't have the quotation. Good luck with that one.

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Michael, this is a very cavalier attitude to take with a family's livelihood.  Without getting into the merits of your argument, it is my understanding that the school has never censured, reprimanded or in any way disciplined Mr. P for anything similar to preaching in class.  While there has been much speculation about whether he had preached in class prior to this time, as far as his disciplinary record goes, this is the first incident (if anyone has documented proof to the contrary, please advise).  Also, given that most people feel that it is impolite to discuss religion with a colleague, I find it to be quite possible that no one took Mr. P aside and suggested that he stop discussing religion in class (assuming that he was prior to such date).  So before we lynch Mr. P for discussing religion in a history class, let's give him the benefit of the doubt and believe that Mr. P did not know that his statements could run afoul of the Establishment Clause.

That being said, this was a mistake on his part.  And while some may believe that we should be infallible, I - and the teacher's union for sure - believe that people should be allowed to make a mistake (within reason) without losing their jobs and, thus, their family's livelihood.  So, while this is a very emotional and polarizing issue, we need to have a sense of calm and proportion when dealing with someone's life in this manner.  If you disagree, ask yourself how unforgiving or careless you would want the person who signs your paycheck to be when dealing with a mistake that you make at work.

Look, there's lots of other reasons to be upset with Mr. P for things that occurred AFTER Matthew recorded the class discussion.  However, none of the conduct is such that the man's job should have been taken absent a similar, future transgressions about which he's already been warned.

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You're right about many things, but this was not a mistake within reason. This was deliberate and outrageous conduct that was obviously longstanding. Michael is right, the man should be fired.

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The ADL is the organization contracted to instruct Kearny teachers on church/state separation.  Perhaps you'll have to have all of them fired after LaClair is done with them.  ;)

So, apparently you're in favor of religious discrimination in government hiring.

And of course what you're dodging is the fact that Paszkiewicz did not teach anything about the ark in any kind of dogmatic fashion.  He simply answered a question posed to him by a student, regarding material that would not be tested.

If students don't get tested on conic sections then of what importance is it that a teacher understand them?

Then why did you object to Paszkiewicz "injecting religious scripture" (which is the point you made to which I was responding)?  Did you type other than what you intended?

So, even though the Bible text had a profound effect on history, as with the Reformation and many other events, you would substantially censor it from the curriculum.  Interesting.  How are students supposed to understand the effects of the text without any familiarity with the text and the doctrines derived therefrom?  Is not the text a part of history?  And the developed doctrines?  Were not those a part of history?

Thus the students' constitutional right not to feel uncomfortable have been abridged?

This issue has been argued for so many months now that it's becoming redundent.

The question is, should this teacher have been fired? While I strongly support Matt's position, I do not believe that the teacher should be fired. Whether we agree or disagree about the constitution and its meaning it seems that the school board entered into an agreement to see that this would not happen in the future.

A person, even a teacher with strong religious convictions sometimes crosses the line without knowing it. Like us all he is human. And just like us all he deserves a second chance. He now knows what he should or shouldn't say. During all of this debate, not once do I ever remember either Matt or his father call for his firing.

If in the future he crosses the line, then he will have to held accountable. Until then we should give him a break. And to Bryan, if you should respond to my comments please don't parcel each paragraph of what I said to look for a hidden meaning.

There are far more important issues we could be discussing.

With the expanded context, it is manifestly obvious that Paszkiewicz was describing a historical doctrine in response to a student's (Matthew LaClair, in this case) question.  The day that describing a historical Christian doctrine in the classroom is made illegal by the Constitution is the day that the Constitution has been turned completely on its head.

I didn't think so.

And you believed the New York Times.  You are a man of faith.

Her state of mind isn't really relevant if you don't have the quotation.  Good luck with that one.

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Paszkiewicz, speaking from a position of authority, inculcated lies to children. That is the bottom line, and you do not get a pass on that one.

He was teaching accelerated U.S. History, so he knew he was violating the Establishment Clause of the Constitution.

He placed his religious faith above the education of his students.

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You know that the life threatening thing was just a ploy to get media attention.

Is there any level to which you will not stoop? Who are you trying to convince? You ought to be ashamed of yourself.

The sharp contrast is between you and the truth,

Cite me lying, and prove the statement is a lie; I dare you. Put up or shut up.

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Michael, this is a very cavalier attitude to take with a family's livelihood.

Excuse me, but Paszkiewicz put himself and his own family's livelihood in danger with his high levels of incompetence, irresponsibility, and dishonesty. He has no one to blame for any and all consequences of his 'teaching methods' but himself.

If the only thing keeping one from getting fired is that the public at large isn't aware what one is doing while on the job, then it's obvious that person has no business holding the position he or she does.

Without getting into the merits of your argument, it is my understanding that the school has never censured, reprimanded or in any way disciplined Mr. P for anything similar to preaching in class.

But considering how blatantly obvious it was on the recordings (and Paszkiewicz's tone suggests anything but him being new to having this type of conversation with students), and the fact that a grand total of one student in that class said anything, that actually makes it seem more likely that this is an ongoing thing. When you have classes full of students who don't make the slightest complaint about the stuff on those recordings, it says something--at the very least, it strongly suggests familiarity.

Also, considering that Paszkiewicz tried to lie his way out of the statements Matthew recorded him saying, and would have succeeded was he not recorded, who knows if another student complained, but without irrefutable evidence like Matthew had, was simply ignored in a he-said-she-said situation? Regardless, even as a 'first offense,' it is so far over the line in so many ways.

While there has been much speculation about whether he had preached in class prior to this time, as far as his disciplinary record goes, this is the first incident (if anyone has documented proof to the contrary, please advise).

Again, I really think how far over the line he went negates any 'first time' leniency that would otherwise be reasonable. It wasn't even the preaching itself--if he had just said in the meeting, "I'm sorry, I went over the line," and promised to rectify the situation, that would pretty much have been the end of it. But no--not only did Paszkiewicz fervently deny making most of the statements Matthew proved he made, but then, in a later class, he complained about having to watch what he said because he feared his words would be twisted around--that was a less-than-subtle (not to mention completely dishonest, considering Matthew's proof was literally verbatim recording of the man's own words), completely unprofessional jab at Matthew. No humility there. No sign that he didn't know he did something wrong (if he thought he did nothing wrong, why would he lie about it? That's the million-dollar question for the 'benefit of the doubt' argument).

Also, given that most people feel that it is impolite to discuss religion with a colleague, I find it to be quite possible that no one took Mr. P aside and suggested that he stop discussing religion in class (assuming that he was prior to such date).  So before we lynch Mr. P for discussing religion in a history class, let's give him the benefit of the doubt and believe that Mr. P did not know that his statements could run afoul of the Establishment Clause.

No. That doesn't work. Know why? Because his attempt to lie his way out of owning up to what he said is a sign of a guilty conscience. If he truly thought he had done nothing wrong, he wouldn't have lied! His response would have been closer to "yes, I said that, so what's the problem?"

That being said, this was a mistake on his part.  And while some may believe that we should be infallible, I - and the teacher's union for sure - believe that people should be allowed to make a mistake (within reason) without losing their jobs and, thus, their family's livelihood.

Not only did Paszkiewicz not merely 'make a mistake,' he made several mistakes, displayed gross incompetence of his own subject, and flatly lied in an attempt to cover up his actions.

Paszkiewicz has done plenty to show that this was no simple 'oops.' It happened in several consecutive classes, and (can't emphasize this enough) he lied about what he said. There is no way one can look at all that and convince anyone this was all some 'honest mistake.'

So, while this is a very emotional and polarizing issue, we need to have a sense of calm and proportion when dealing with someone's life in this manner.  If you disagree, ask yourself how unforgiving or careless you would want the person who signs your paycheck to be when dealing with a mistake that you make at work.

Again, you are trying very hard to trivialize his actions, but they are far too deliberate to be explained away so easily.

Look, there's lots of other reasons to be upset with Mr. P for things that occurred AFTER Matthew recorded the class discussion.  However, none of the conduct is such that the man's job should have been taken absent a similar, future transgressions about which he's already been warned.

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I think a math teacher only has to say that they think 1 + 1 = 5 once (ignoring something like a slip of the tongue, smartasses ;)) to put their job in serious danger. Why should it be any different for a history teacher? His incompetence by itself is enough reason to cost him his job. He doesn't know his US history, period, and neither do all the students who weren't even aware that Paszkiewicz was doing anything wrong.

People will most often point their fingers at the teachers first when it comes to kids not being learned in a subject. But what can you expect, when incompetent teachers like Paszkiewicz are being defended like this? GIGO.

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Paszkiewicz, speaking from a position of authority, inculcated lies to children.  That is the bottom line, and you do not get a pass on that one.

Who gets no pass on this one?

Are you supposed to get a pass on the fact that you apparently just gave up on supporting your arguments in favor of just insisting that you're correct?

Name the supposed lies Paszkiewicz "inculcated."

He was teaching accelerated U.S. History, so he knew he was violating the Establishment Clause of the Constitution.

Why should he think that he was violating the establishment clause when what he did appears to agree with a statement on church/state separation signed by the ADL, the group now in charge of teaching church/state separation issues to Kearny's teachers?

He placed his religious faith above the education of his students.

69565[/snapback]

Just like you placed your faith (in the New York Times) over the truth? ;)

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This issue has been argued for so many months now that it's becoming redund[a]nt.

O'Donnell didn't get the memo.

The question is, should this teacher have been fired? While I strongly support Matt's position, I do not believe that the teacher should be fired. Whether we agree or disagree about the constitution and its meaning it seems that the school board entered into an agreement to see that this would not happen in the future.

I don't feel like letting O'Donnell post his claptrap without an opposing view. Is that OK with you? ;)

A person, even a teacher with strong religious convictions sometimes crosses the line without knowing it. Like us all he is human.

True. And I forgive Matthew for overstepping the line.

And just like us all he deserves a second chance. He now knows what he should or shouldn't say. During all of this debate, not once do I ever remember either Matt or his father call for his firing.

Regardless, O'Donnell is now here doing exactly that.

If in the future he crosses the line, then he will have to held accountable. Until then we should give him a break. And to Bryan, if you should respond to my comments please don't parcel each paragraph of what I said to look for a hidden meaning.

Huh?

There are far more important issues we could be discussing.

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Convince O'Donnell and you'll convince me. :)

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Guest Keith-Marshall,Mo
The ADL is the organization contracted to instruct Kearny teachers on church/state separation.  Perhaps you'll have to have all of them fired after LaClair is done with them.  ;)

So, apparently you're in favor of religious discrimination in government hiring.

And of course what you're dodging is the fact that Paszkiewicz did not teach anything about the ark in any kind of dogmatic fashion.  He simply answered a question posed to him by a student, regarding material that would not be tested.

If students don't get tested on conic sections then of what importance is it that a teacher understand them?

Then why did you object to Paszkiewicz "injecting religious scripture" (which is the point you made to which I was responding)?  Did you type other than what you intended?

So, even though the Bible text had a profound effect on history, as with the Reformation and many other events, you would substantially censor it from the curriculum.  Interesting.  How are students supposed to understand the effects of the text without any familiarity with the text and the doctrines derived therefrom?  Is not the text a part of history?  And the developed doctrines?  Were not those a part of history?

Thus the students' constitutional right not to feel uncomfortable have been abridged?

With the expanded context, it is manifestly obvious that Paszkiewicz was describing a historical doctrine in response to a student's (Matthew LaClair, in this case) question.  The day that describing a historical Christian doctrine in the classroom is made illegal by the Constitution is the day that the Constitution has been turned completely on its head.

I didn't think so.

And you believed the New York Times.  You are a man of faith.

Her state of mind isn't really relevant if you don't have the quotation.  Good luck with that one.

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The man is a youth pastor. He brought that aspect of his private life into a public school classroom. You know it. I know it. I must say Bryan that your responses are not as long winded a normal. Are you bored?. With your surgical skills of hair splitting, maybe you should spend your time defending George Bush. That is if anyone even has that kind of time.

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