The Middleton-Cross Plains School District has been ordered to rehire Andrew Harris -- a science teacher at Glacier Creek Middle School in Cross Plains, Wis. who looked at porn at work -- as well as offer him back pay and benefits estimated at $200,000, the Wisconsin State Journal reports.
The School Board and Superintendent Don Johnson plan to discuss whether or not to appeal the private arbitrator's decision in a meeting on Monday, but released a statement acknowledging their disappointment.
"This ruling completely minimizes conduct that cannot be tolerated," the statement said. "It sends the message that it is acceptable for employees to view pornography at school, during the student-school day, on school equipment. It also flies in the face of the need to provide a professional work environment and a safe place to educate our children."
They're not the only ones in disagreement with the decision. Several parents told WSIC TV they're outraged, and don't feel the ruling is right.
"You mean to tell me the person that had (porn) on their computer in my child's school gets to come back to work?" parent Lisa Cole told the station. "And I get to pay him again?"
"All I know is, if you or I in our jobs had that on our computer, we'd be fired," Cole continued, according to WSIC. "There would be no hiring us back ... I don't want him near my kid."
Another parent, Missy Osborne, told the station that Harris shouldn't be allowed to be a teacher again.
According to another post by the Wisconsin State Journal, the district has already spent $343,000 on legal fees for the case and is still faced with another $25,000 for the private arbitrator.
The main reason for the ruling that Harris should claim his job back centers around the fact that, after he was fired from his position in 2010, legislation was passed that was "tougher" on pornography in schools. Because the Harris incident occurred before, however, they don't apply to the case.
In an interview, the Wisconsin State Journal says Harris hopes to resume his career in the fall, but so far it is unclear if he will be working in a classroom.
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