Teacher Sent Porn While Students Were in The Classroom

Democratic Governor candidate Tony Evers is being questioned for his inconsistency in regards to legislation that gives the Department of Public Instruction the power to revoke a teacher’s licence if they are found viewing porn on school computers. On two occasions dealing with this problem, it has been demonstrated that Evers as Superintendent of DPI has acted inconsistently.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel highlighted  Evers’ inconsistency by analyzing two cases, one involving Kent A. Tollakson, whose teaching licence was revoked after he was found viewing porn on a work computer at school in 2008, and another involving Andrew Harris, whose licence wasn’t revoked in 2014 after he was found to have viewed pornographic images on a computer at school in the Middleton-Cross Plains School District. Evers has come under heavy criticism for not revoking Harris’ teaching license. Evers has claimed that the law as written at the time didn’t allow such a move. So why was Tollakson’s license revoked?

The Journal Sentinel reported that the differences between the two cases was that students weren’t around to see the images in the Harris’ case. It reported that, “Evers and DPI officials have said they wanted to revoke Harris’ license but couldn’t because, unlike in the separate Tollakson case, no students were in Harris’ classroom while he viewed the emails.”

However, the appellate brief filed by the school district after the arbitrator’s ruling tells a different story. The district claims that some images were sent during the school day, and even sent in class where students could’ve been exposed:

“Harris’ conduct occurred at a middle school that serves eleven, twelve and thirteen year old children. Nevertheless, Harris received and viewed this material at school, responded to it at school, and shared it with professional colleagues in professional meetings at school, often during the school day.”

“Harris’ activity did take place during the school day, while he was at his desk, when children were in the building and, in at least one instance, the classroom.

Alec Zimmerman of the Republican Part of Wisconsin responded to the revelation:

“This shocking revelation is proof positive that Tony Evers is knowingly lying to the people of Wisconsin. Evers had the authority to protect children and teachers by removing bad actors from the classroom – and he proved it with his own signature in 2008. His flip-flopping under Union pressure is rooted in falsehoods, and it’s long overdue that Evers fully explain why sexual harassment, predatory comments about children, and spreading pornography at school were not enough to remove an embattled teacher from the classroom.”