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Middleton teacher placed at new school amid controversy

Published On: Jan 21 2014 05:25:59 PM CST   Updated On: Jan 21 2014 10:20:44 PM CST

Courtesy MCPASD

School district photo of Andrew Harris dated 2009.

MIDDLETON, Wis. -

Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District officials sent a letter to staff and parents Tuesday announcing where a teacher at the center of recent controversy will be sent.

According to the letter, Andrew Harris has been offered a position teaching seventh-grade science at Kromrey Middle School.

Harris was a seventh-grade science teacher at Glacier Creek Middle School until he was accused of sending and receiving explicit emails on the job.

Last week the State Supreme Court refused to hear the case. The arbitrators ruled it inappropriate to terminate Harris, and said he should be reinstated to his position and receive back pay.

According to the letter, Harris will replace Eric Engel, who has accepted a position as a dean of students at Kromrey. Harris is expected to report to school on Friday and will start teaching students Monday.

School officials said in the letter, “We believe this meets the arbitrator’s ruling that the district must offer him his former position or a substantially equivalent position.”

“He does not have to work for us, but we’ve complied with the court order so we have no indication that he intends to do anything but teach. We have no indication that he doesn’t want to come back,” MCPASD Superintendent Don Johnson said.

According to the letter, the district will not reassign students to a different seventh-grade science classroom if parents do not want their child in Harris’ classroom.

"We don't have any choice in the matter at this particular point. I do understand that there are concerns for parents so we'll do everything we can to ensure that this is an orderly, safe and well-run classroom," Johnson said.

Letter from MCPASD to staff

Letter from MCPASD to parents

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