X Teachers Want Money

Two former Loudon County teachers are asking the Loudon County School Board for several hundred thousand dollars. Both claim they were victims of age and sex discrimination when they were not rehired in 2010. Both had worked at Eaton Elementary.

Nancy Kersten, 210 Meadow Road Friendsville and Kathleen Eckhardt, 220 Meadow Road Friendsville, have filed a complaint with the US Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC). The EEOC has determined that the evidence presented by the charging parties gives reasonable evidence that their accusations may have merit.

The EEOC ask that the county school board enter into conciliation discussions with the charging parties to settle the matter. Ms. Kersten is asking for $156,889.00 to settle her complaint. Ms. Eckhardt is asking for $80,449.00 to settle her complaint. The EEOC asked for a response from the school board as to whether the board will accept the terms of the settlement.

Through the board's attorney, the board has responded.

"At this time the board is not interested in conciliation discussions."

Both teachers were non tenured teachers at the time their contracts were not renewed.

The EEOC states that if the board does not agree to conciliation discussions the complaints will be forwarded to the Department Of Justice for review.

Click Here To Read Complaint

Letter from Jason Vance, Director Of Schools, to school board members in explination of the complaints

Dear Board Members,

Attached you will find a copy of a suit from two former teachers from Eaton Elementary School. These teachers did not have their contracts renewed a few years ago. After speaking with Chuck Cagle, we are not going to agree to these terms. We believe that we were in the right when we did not renew their contracts. This may go to the next level.  However, I will keep you in the loop as we progress through the stages.

I don't believe that this case has any merit. Local Education Agencies have always been able to dismiss teachers who were not tenured for what ever reason. The EEOC, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, is stating that these ladies had positive evaluations and were dismissed due to their age. What they are missing is that one of these ladies actually had an opportunity to work in a different grade level and refused and the other one was terribly disrespectful to a parent in a meeting, making terrible comments to them about their child intellectual ability. I believe that they will probably ask for this to be moved to the next level once they realize that we are not going to agree to the terms. A case very similar to this was tried this past school year in Monroe County and found to be without merit.

As always, if you have any questions please feel free to call, e-mail, or stop by the office.

Jason Vance
Director of Schools
Loudon County Schools