Marie Jarry, the former second-grade teacher who resigned after making an appearance in a bikini on the “Howard Stern Show,” is suing Southington, Connecticut school officials as well as her union. She has good reason to complain about being fired for an appearance in a swimsuit on a television program on her own time. The increasing enforcement of after-hours codes of conduct by employers should be viewed as a cause of alarm for a society that prides itself on freedom of association and speech.
The greatest problem for Jarry is her resignation in May for her position as a second-grade teacher at Thalberg Elementary School in Southington. This is not the first time a teacher has resigned under pressure and then regretted the decision, click here.
She had taken sick leave days to appear (and ultimately win $5,000) on the show’s “Ugliest Dude, Hottest Wife” contest.
In her federal filing, she is demanding reinstatement and back pay. For the story, click here.
Parents appear to believe that their teachers must meet purity standards in their private lives to teach their children. Parent Dean LaPoint was aghast: “I can’t believe she would go on TV and do that when she is a second-grade teacher. It just doesn’t make sense.” Really, Dean, what doesn’t make sense to me is that you believe that you believe that a teacher cannot live her life according to her own values.
Marie did not sexual references on the video, but this was far from the classroom. A parent Liz Francis almost had it right: “They work hard during the school day and what they do on their own time is their business . . . ” Then she veered off track into morals enforcement ” . . . but because of the nature of the Howard Stern show, the board was concerned.” Here’s an idea, don’t watch. I have never actually seen one of Stern’s shows. I saw about two minutes once and found it juvenile and idiotic.
She is only the latest. Recently, Florida teacher Tiffany Shepard lost her job because of a part-time bikini job on a charter boat, click here.
Of course, the good people Florida and Connecticut are merely amateurs at this morality policing. Iran has a whole department dedicated to arresting women who drink coffee with males or engage in immoral conduct, click here
The inclusion of the union as a defendant is an interesting element. It would appear that the union, usually very protective over teachers, may have been less than supportive in this case. I do not know why. This seems to me to be a serious abridgment of individual rights of a teacher. If there is some complaint over the use of sick leave, I doubt seriously that the usual punishment is a forced resignation. Indeed, it appears a rule universally honored in the breach.
For the original full story and video, click here