While the Kansas City Star is running breathless front pages exposés on a priest who left the area 42 years ago–no exaggeration–its editors pay scant attention to the recurring, real time phenomenon of public school teachers getting busted for sex with students. The Kansas teachers union, the KNEA, pays even less.
The Star reports on the arrest of 42-year Jason Crum, a Kansas City, Kansas, elementary school teacher as briefly and matter-of-factly as if Crum were arrested for a DUI. In fact, however, he was arrested for the sexual exploitation of a 15-year-old girl.
Tyrone Bates, the principal of Banneker Elementary, sent an email to parents on Friday alerting them to the arrest for “alleged inappropriate behavior with a child” and informing them that Crum was placed on “administrative leave.”
There is no apology from Bates, no request that other parents with suspicions come forward, no sense of urgency. It is all by the book as the KNEA would have it. “We are cooperating with authorities in their investigation of this matter,” writes Yates. That’s about it.
If tradition holds, Crum will be in out of the news within a day. For years the Catholic Church was much too tolerant of its homosexual subculture. That has changed. Unchallenged by the media, the public school establishment has seen no reason to change.
The North Kansas City School District is a case in point. The media will not have to go back 50-some years to find unexamined scandal. Six NKC District employees were busted for sex with students in a 13-month period just last year.
On the Kansas side, the problem is just as severe. In June of this year, Piper middle school principal Eric Kilgore was arrested for the sexual solicitation of the a seventh-grader. As is the norm when public school teachers or principals are arrested for having sex with minors, the media dutifully report the story and then drop it. There is no investigation into the teacher’s past, no inquiry into union involvement, no mention of the offender’s supervisors.
In a video series from May of this year, the undercover reporters of Project Veritas captured several teachers union honchos boasting of how they can cover up crimes against schoolchildren. The media chose not to notice.
In one video, Project Veritas recorded Steve Wentz, president of United Teachers of Wichita, telling an undercover reporter how he threatens “to kick the ass” of unruly students. Wentz sued Project Veritas. “Our position is, we caught him on video saying things,” said a Project Veritas attorney. “Which one of Mr. Wentz’s statements that are recorded on video is he claiming he didn’t say?” The media were sympathetic to Wentz.
In March of this year, a former Olathe South High School teacher received a slap on the wrist for having sex with a 16-year-old student. A Johnson County court sentenced Michael Jasiczek, 43, to 10 days in jail and three years of probation. He too was in and out of the news in a heartbeat.
In February, as reported in the Wichita Eagle, Derby school board members voted 6-0 to fire teacher Cody Chitwood, “effective immediately.” Chitwood had been charged earlier in February with 11 counts of of sexual exploitation of a child. As is normative, a Google search of “Chitwood” and “KNEA” turned up nothing.
Two years earlier, Steven Young, an eighth-grade social studies teacher at Derby North Middle School, pled guilty to one count of electronic solicitation of a child and was sentenced to three years in prison. A Google search of “Steven Young” and “KNEA” again turned up nothing.
In January, a Wichita special ed teacher was arrested for aggravated sexual battery of a mentally deficient person. In October, a female Kansas biology teacher in Hiawatha was arrested for having sexual relations with a student. In October, another female teacher from Caney was given probation for having sex with a student. In October, a male Arkansas City teacher was arrested on suspicion of unlawful sexual relations. A year earlier a male Chanute teacher was arrested for having sex with a student.
The assaults go on and on, and the KNEA says nothing, does nothing. The KNEA does offer, however, “an array of legal services to its members.” Boasts the KNEA, “The Association has made an unwavering commitment to protect the rights of Kansas teachers and improve the power of their collective voice as well as their individual rights.”
Now if only they would do the same for the students.