License revocations for immoral conduct offenses spiked following scrutiny from WISGOP
July 5, 2018
[Madison, WI] — Last fall, Tony Evers’ failure to remove a teacher from the classroom spreading pornography and making sexually explicit comments about children became a major issuein the race for governor. Now, records show that when under scrutiny for his failures, Evers’ agency engaged in a cover-up – revoking more licenses in September than at any other point during his tenure. The Republican Party of Wisconsin released the following statement on Evers’ attempt to cover up his agency’s failures in order to save his political ambitions:
“Tony Evers refused to take action when it was time to protect children, but he moved pretty quickly when his political career was in danger,” spokesman Alec Zimmerman said. “This is a cover-up, plain and simple, but it won’t erase the fact that Evers has a long career of inaction and mismanagement at his agency – Wisconsin families simply can’t trust Madison bureaucrat Tony Evers to protect them.”
Check out the full story from Dan Bice in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel here, or find excerpts below.
Evers started revoking more licenses after Republicans notice his inaction:
Shortly after Republicans accused him of being soft on teachers guilty of improper and immoral conduct, state School Superintendent Tony Evers cracked down.
Records show Evers, the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination for governor, and his agency revoked or negotiated the surrender of the licenses of 12 educators last September — by far the most of any month during Evers’ eight-year tenure. He had previously averaged less than one revocation a month.
The teachers and principals who lost their licenses in September had sexually assaulted students, criminally neglected children and engaged in “immoral conduct.”
Evers and his agency took this sweeping action just weeks after the state Republican Party began running an ad criticizing him for not suspending the license of Andrew Harris, a Middleton middle school teacher who had viewed porn on his work computer. The ad said Evers had repeatedly failed to hold teachers accountable for “immoral conduct.”
Evers revokes licenses at a faster pace when it becomes a threat to his political ambitions:
State law had previously said “immoral conduct” involved any activity that “endangers the health, safety, welfare, or education of any pupil. That was changed to include educators who use school equipment “to download, view, solicit, seek, display, or distribute pornographic material.”
Even so, Evers’ agency still revoked the licenses of only two teachers in 2014 and again in 2015. One was caught viewing porn at work. The others had sexually assaulted or enticed children.
But that all changed in 2016, when 25 educators lost their licenses. The figure bumped up to 32 last year, including the dozen educators in September, a month after Evers announced his gubernatorial bid and the GOP attacked him on this issue.’’
Read the full story here.