An appeals court has upheld the firing of a special-education teacher at a central New Jersey school who told her predominantly black students they were “stupid” and “acting like monkeys.”
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Courtney Watson was a fifth-grade teacher at the Sampson G. Smith School in Franklin Township in Somerset County until she was fired for her behavior in the 2011-12 school year.
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According to court papers, Watson told an administrative hearing that she did not believe her statements would be perceived as offensive. She also admitted she told another staff member she was going “to flatten one of her students.”
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The Courier News of Bridgewater reports the appeals court found Watson's “conduct manifests behavior that specifically undermines the public's trust and confidence in her as a teacher.”