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Aulwurm v. Board of Education

OPINION FILED NOVEMBER 17, 1976.

ROY AULWURM, PLAINTIFF-APPELLANT,

v.

THE BOARD OF EDUCATION OF MURPHYSBORO COMMUNITY UNIT SCHOOL DISTRICT OF JACKSON COUNTY, DEFENDANT-APPELLEE.



APPEAL from the Circuit Court of Jackson County; the Hon. PEYTON H. KUNCE, Judge, presiding.

MR. JUSTICE EBERSPACHER DELIVERED THE OPINION OF THE COURT:

Plaintiff, Roy Aulwurm, filed a complaint for administrative review of the decision of defendant, Board of Education of Murphysboro Community Unit School District No. 186 of Jackson County, Illinois, dismissing him from employment. This decision, made on April 16, 1975, after hearings held on March 18, 1975, and April 1, 1975, was confirmed by the circuit court of Jackson County in an order entered in December, 1975. Plaintiff brings this appeal to set aside the circuit court's order and seeks reinstatement as a teacher.

Plaintiff, who was teaching during his third year at Murphysboro High School, had attained contractual continued service status (tenure) by virtue of the provisions of article 24 of the School Code (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1973, ch. 122, par 24-11).

On January 16, 1975, the Board sent plaintiff a notice of dismissal effective immediately preceding the close of school on the last day of the school term ending in June, 1975. The reasons given in the Board's letter informing plaintiff of its action were as follows:

"1. Your insubordination and failure to follow instructions of your supervisors;

2. Your failure to cooperate with your supervisors;

3. Your lack of preparation for your teaching duties and assignments;

4. Your lack of care for the physical school facilities of the District;

5. Your failure to comply with stated policies of the Board of Education;

6. Your failure to perform the teaching duties assigned to you;

7. Your failure to carry out tasks assigned to you by your supervisors;

8. In the opinion of the Board of Education the best interest of the school require your dismissal."

A bill of particulars was requested and provided. It stated that plaintiff had failed to submit lesson plans and attendance forms as required by the school board, and had ignored specific requests for performance of these tasks on several occasions over a period of two years. Additionally, it was stated that plaintiff had failed to turn in needed reports dealing with student recognition as requested by his superiors. The bill of particulars also cited plaintiff's failure to provide the students of the district an opportunity to participate in dramatics, music and voice by not giving a spring play though obligated to do so. Finally, in plaintiff's duties as an athletic coach, he was cited with failing to cooperate with his supervisors, and being absent and late for team practices.

On March 19 and April 1, 1975, hearings were held before the Board, at which times testimony was heard concerning the dismissal. At the first hearing, counsel for plaintiff moved to dismiss the action on the grounds that the Board lacked jurisdiction for the hearing, as all of the charges were remediable and the Board had failed to give written warnings and an opportunity to remedy the defects of his performance as required by section 24-12 of the School Code (Ill. Rev. Stat. 1973, ch. 122, par. 24-12). The Board denied this motion. On April 15, 1975, the Board adopted a resolution approving the dismissal of ...


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