LAUSD Teacher Suspended Over Nudity Joke In Classroom

Perhaps it's because it's so huge, but it seems there is always some kind of controversy within the Los Angeles Unified School District. Today brings us to a teacher named Rafe Esquith, widely recognized for his excellent as an educator but now in so called ''teacher jail'', under investigation.

Esquith, if you're a regular watcher of Fox 11 News, was the subject of a half hour special we aired a couple of years back, profiling him and the many things he does that go above and beyond. The issue before us now is over a remark he says he made as a joke, that if his students didn't raise enough money to put on a play (he teaches Shakespeare in addition to his regular 5th grade assignment) they'd 'have to perform naked like the King in Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn.'

Apparently someone didn't find that as amusing as he did, and  (supporters believe) motivated by jealousy, they reported him to the district. Hence the investigation, hence placing Esquith on leave ( 'teacher jail' ) while the investigation plays out over an undefined timetable.

The district would only say via email that they will conduct that investigation with the ''highest integrity'' and that Esquith's ''celebrity'' as it is, will not influence them. His supports, who arrived en masse to the district board meeting today with signs and energy to voice their support, think the district is overreacting to past controversies and Esquith is paying a ridiculous price. A parade of people spoke of his character, his morality, his dedication, his honesty. If the board members were impressed, they kept it to themselves.

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