Former teacher accuses Houston school district of discrimination

Andrea Dearden Sep. 17, 2014, 2:12pm

A former teacher with the Houston Independent School District alleges he was fired because of his race and for filing grievances against his school.

Robert Green filed a lawsuit in the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas on Aug. 14 against the Houston Independent School District. 

Green, who describes himself as an African-American male, says he was working for the school district as a 4th grade teacher in April 2013 when he was told his contract was not being renewed because of job performance. Green alleges he had never been made aware of any job performance issues prior to that.

In March 2013, according to the complaint, Toren Woolridge was hired as the school's new principal and almost immediately began attacking Green's job performance. Green alleges the principal also accused him of threatening Woolridge. However, Green alleges he was the one threatened by Woolridge and says he filed a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Texas Workforce Commission Civil Rights Division to report the incident.

Green alleges he was not given a chance to correct any alleged job performance deficiencies before being fired. He also alleges he knew of a non-black teacher with job performance issues at the same time and their probationary contract was renewed. Green also says he received a good evaluation by the former principal in November 2012.

Green accuses the Houston Independent School District of race discrimination, retaliation and breach of contract for failing to follow its own discipline, performance and harassment policies. He seeks an unspecified amount of money for back and front pay, loss of earning potential and benefits.

Attorney Debra Jennings, of Missouri City, represents Green. They request a jury trial.

Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas case number: 14-CV-02352.

This is a report on a civil lawsuit filed at the Houston Division of the Southern District of Texas. The details in this report come from an original complaint filed by a plaintiff. Please note that a complaint represents an accusation by a private individual, not the government. It is not an indication of guilt and it represents only one side of the story.

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