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WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 23, 2006
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EDITORIAL

Dump Steve White, even if ballot remains blank

Fired West Limestone High School science teacher Steve White had good reason to request the closed appeals hearing of his termination. Testimony painted a picture of a teacher who leaped over the edge in trying to be buddies with his students.

He might have said his classroom antics were attempts to relate to students, but arbitrator Joseph Battle's report offers graphic details that Mr. White steered students to an area that dictated that he be fired.

First reports of Mr. White's classroom misbehavior centered on presidential politics that were unfavorable to President Bush. That upset many parents of his students. Then came the revelation of graphic material targeting the Clintons.

As more details became available, the evidence suggested far greater offenses.

"The teacher would ask the students more than once not to tell their parents about the e-mail attachments because that would get him in trouble," the report says about computer misuse.

The computer is a relatively new classroom learning aid, but school systems have established guidelines for its use. Even if not, a schoolteacher should know that doing what the report reveals is highly inappropriate.

Mr. White refused to withdraw as the Democratic nominee for House of Representatives District 4. He couldn't win and can only succeed in associating the party with the image of Demo-crats that Republicans have so successfully pinned on their political rivals.

The party executive committee is to meet Saturday and should kick him off the ticket and denounce his reported conduct, even if it means leaving the ballot blank.

Actually, it should already have booted him.

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