WOODBRIDGE, N.J. – A former middle school English teacher who was suspended nearly two years ago for calling students prostitutes and other bad behavior doesn’t deserve his job back, a state judge ruled.
Judge Tiffany M. Williams found that suspended teacher James Lang “is not fit to lead in an educational institution among moldable young minds,” and sided with school officials who suspended Lang without pay about 20 months ago for his bad behavior, the Daily Record reports.
Lang allegedly flirted with young female students at Fords Middle School where he taught, and called several whores or prostitutes. Lang was also accused of “making unwanted advances at a female teacher, telling her that he wished she was Lady Gaga so that he could watch her ‘hook up’ with another female teacher,” the news site reports.
The lengthy appeals process in necessary because Lang is a tenured teacher, which means his termination is subject to state review and an administrative hearing to determine if the charges against him are credible.
Lang’s record of misconduct dates back to the 2003-04 school year, shortly after his was hired by the school district. He has worked at three different middle schools in the district and racked up several disturbing allegations before school officials removed him from the classroom.
“The district’s tenure charges accused Lang of:
“Calling a student ‘Jo-Jo the Ho-Ho’ and a ‘dirty ho,’ slang terms for prostitute.
“Calling a student a whore and suggesting she wear less clothing on dress-down day.
“Telling a female student who bent over to pick up a paper that he would ‘tap that.’
“Asking students during class whether they would be afraid if his ‘snake were in their bed.’
“Saying that a female student’s ‘mouth was fast and on the weekends runs extra fast.
“Telling his class that he used to watch students shower at a former job at a community center.
“Telling students that his supervisor, who now is principal of Woodbine Avenue School No. 23, had a bladder problem and that he saw her ‘out drinking and dancing.’
“In further counts, the tenure charges accuse Lang of telling a French teacher that he wanted to see her in a bathing suit and kiss another teacher,” Watchdog.org reports.
Judge Williams said Lang’s “grotesque and sexual” behavior “violated all standards of decency” and “contributed to a sexually demeaning environment.”
Her ruling – that school officials were justified in firing Lang – becomes final in 45 days as long as New Jersey Education Commissioner Chris Cerf doesn’t intervene. Lang’s attorney, Edward Cringe, told the news site he will appeal Williams’ ruling.