10/21/2014

Currently

59°F

Cloudy
Humidity: 62%
Pressure: 29.84 in

Local

Mountlake Terrace H.S. coach who resigned was about to be fired

Mountlake Terrace H.S. coach who resigned was about to be fired
MOUNTLAKE TERRACE, Wash. - A former teacher's aide and assistant football coach at Mountlake Terrace High School was about to be fired when he resigned in January, and the school district says it all began when a student accused him of making inappropriate sexual comments.

But the aide's job ended when the district says it discovered he falsified information on his application. They say he failed to tell them he worked for another district and that he faced the same allegations there.

Back in December, Mountlake Terrace High School students noticed the school's discipline administrator was gone without explanation. In January, he abruptly resigned.

Monday, the Edmonds School District confirms he was about to be fired.

"We were on the verge of termination when he opted to resign," said D.J. Jakala with the Edmonds School District.

The district's investigation began when a student told staff he overheard the teacher's aide making inappropriate sexual comments to girls. During its investigation, the district discovered the aide worked for the Northshore School District and faced similar allegations -- something the district says he never told them.

"That is a large violation to falsify your application to a public school district," Jakala said. "And on those grounds alone is a basis for termination."

We were surprised the district didn't know sooner but the state and the district said allegations aren't tracked and the state only investigated certificated staff, like teachers.

The aide, who's worked for the district since 2009, declined to comment. Any type of educator is required to report past allegations.

Students we talked to called him fair and firm.

"I thought he was decent," said senior Max Jernijn.

"Cheerful -- he never had a anything bad to say," added junior William Baggett.

The State Office of Public Instruction says it understands how for parents it might be frustrating that they don't track allegations, but says districts are in charge of their hiring decisions. On top of that, the district says there is no evidence of criminal wrongdoing.
Share:
Sheriff felt physically threatened by former citizen watchdog Sheriff felt physically threatened by former citizen watchdog