Jesus Jara's attacks on unions included unlawful firing. Appeals Court overturned Superintendent
Collective bargaining agreements are in place to protect an organization's labor force.
School Boards are in place to oversee the actions of a District’s Superintendent.
When the first is ignored and the second fails in its task, the courts may be called on to intervene.
As an employee of the Monroe County, Florida District Thomas Amador fell into the third category. He needed judicial intervention. And even with an initial favorable ruling by an administrative law judge it took him five years to find justice.
Why? Because on a balmy January day in 2012 a Superintendent, who led the school district where Mr. Amador worked, set out to destroy the air conditioning tech’s life. The reasons for the vengeful, vindictive actions by Amador’s boss are still only whispered about to this day among the denizens of the tiny Florida county where the entire student population totals less than 10,000 yet whatever events led up to that fateful winter day, the actions described in the May 24th, 2017 ruling by Florida’s Third District Court of Appeals outline one man’s thirst for power, control, and a dictatorial desire to rule.
The majority decision in favor of the appellant, more than five and half years in the making, laid out a brutal indictment of the administrator’s actions, showing that he created his own rules while ignoring an in place collective bargaining agreement, the initial ruling of the administrative law judge first assigned to overhear the case, and ultimately, the facts of the case, to render his own harsh verdict.
These actions, coming just months after being hand picked by then Florida Governor, now Senator, Rick Scott for the position, indirectly led to the refusal by the elected members of the Monroe County School Board, a group who first supported him, to decline him an extension of his term, as the case of Amador vs. the School Board of Monroe County was just the first in a series of measures ranging from petty to retaliatory that had the Governor’s appointee quickly fall out of favor with the community he was tasked to lead.
The name of the educator: Jesus F. Jara
Below are portions of the Court’s ruling, in its own words.