PEORIA, Ill. – A teacher fired for not reporting a sex tape made by another teacher with a student is suing the school for improper dismissal. Kellie Wood filed a suit against Peoria Public School District 150 late last month.
Wood was a teacher at District 150 when her roommate and fellow teacher, Amanda Ludwig, told her about a sex tape Ludwig made with a 15-year-old student. Ludwig was arrested and eventually sentenced to five years of incarceration, and Wood was fired several months later for “insubordination, unprofessional conduct, unethical conduct and poor performance in the area of professionalism,” according to a Peoria JournalStar report.
One reason the district gave for the dismissal was that she didn’t tell her superiors that on Jan. 31, 2013, a student as well as Ludwig told her there was a recording of Ludwig and a student having sex. Teachers are mandated by state law to report such things.”
Wood claims she is unable to find employment as a teacher after the district fired her, and is seeking $3 million through the courts. Wood claims District 150 violated her due process protections.
The JournalStar continued: “[T]he state Board of Education investigated and found Wood engaged in no wrongdoing. Despite that, the suit states, the district didn’t allow her to have a hearing to refute the allegations.
“As a direct and proximate result of the (district’s) violation of (Wood’s) procedural due process rights, (Wood’s) reputation has been so damaged that she cannot secure employment as a teacher.”
No wrongdoing? Unless we’re missing something here, it’s quite clear that Wood knew that a student was being molested by her roommate and failed to take action to protect the child. She should not only lose her ability to teach anywhere, ever again, but should be incarcerated herself.
Ludwig pleaded guilty last August to a reduced charge of aggravated criminal sexual abuse for which she received a five-year sentence. She had faced a 10-year sentence for the initial charge of enticing a student to have sex. The JournalStar reports that Ludwig had been engaged in sexual relations with the student for several months.
The JournalStar wrote in August 2013: “In federal court, Ludwig was accused of sending the teen sexually explicit text messages over several months. The two had sex at the end of January in a classroom at Manual, according to federal court records.
“Ludwig wasn’t the boy’s teacher but was helping him with school work, according to federal court records. Federal documents state the two were communicating through text messages for several weeks and that those conversations turned sexual in nature.
“The charges were filed in federal court because the text messages involve the Internet and interstate commerce, which makes the offense a federal crime.”
The story concludes: “School officials learned about the matter when another student told district police officers that the 15-year-old boy had bragged about having sex with Ludwig and showed a video on his cellphone. When questioned, Ludwig allegedly admitted to ‘sexting’ the boy and then having sex with him.”