Illinois Supreme Court Ruling
2:11 pm
Thu August 9, 2012

Schools Must Share Info About Employee Sex Abuse Allegations

The Illinois Supreme Court ruled a school district that suspended a teacher because of allegations of sexual misconduct had a duty to warn another district where  the teacher later found work.

Jon  White was twice suspended from his teaching job in Normal. But the  McLean County school district did not disclose that when the Urbana  schools asked to verify White's employment.

White was eventually convicted of abusing eight girls in Urbana and two  in  Normal. He will spend most of the next 30 years in prison.

Sean Britton argued before the court in January on behalf of victims. He said the McLean County schools were "passing" the teacher off to become someone else's problem.

"That's what passing is. It's an effort to take a teacher who has problems, who has issues -- get him out of your school district; get him off into another school district; God protect those children," Britton said.

In a 5-2 decision, the court ruled that was unacceptable.

The  majority says its decision was based in part on the emphasis Illinois law places on protecting children from sex offenders.

Thanks to Illinois Public Radio