JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A second teacher has been removed from Douglas Anderson School of the Arts for alleged misconduct.
This comes after the arrest last week of longtime Duval County Public Schools music teacher Jeffrey Clayton, who is accused of lewd behavior with a student.
Per DCPS, the second teacher “was removed from the classroom and assigned non-teaching duties on or about March 1. He was reassigned to duties off-campus on March 9. This investigation remains open.”
Chris Moser is familiar with cases like Jeffrey Clayton. Having litigated one in St. Johns County. She said teachers are mandatory reporters and have a responsibility to respond when they hear teacher conduct complaints.
“You have a duty to report it to DCF,” Moser said. “DCF comes and they do their own independent investigation, and if it seems as if a crime has been committed, they work hand-in-hand with law enforcement.”
Years ago, Moser represented Jo Ellen Parkey’s family when her child was the victim of grooming by a Murray Middle School teacher. That teacher resigned, and the principal was found negligent for ignoring Parkey’s complaints.
“My point is, and it becomes clear over and over and over again,” Parkey said, “that somebody needs to be worrying about other people’s children because it’s not the people in the building who are worrying about other people’s children.”
Moser said the situation is sad because there are so many great teachers at Douglas Anderson, but some failed to perform the duty they take on by not reporting complaints about Clayton.
“It is a profound breach of trust, not just Mr. Clayton’s actions,” Moser said. “But so many people who thought, ‘Well, if I tell my principal, I’ve done my job.’”
If you suspect your child or one that you know is a victim, you should call the DCF Abuse Hotline at 1-800-962-2873.
Duval School officials told First Coast News they’ll be waiting to comment further until the investigations are complete.
A spokesperson for the district said: “We’ve heard many voices over the last few days, and that has led us to ask the questions that need to be asked. We are doing that now, and it is best for students, parents, school staff and the public for us to reserve specific comments until we have clear answers. The work to get to those answers is in progress.
Students, alumni, or others who might have information useful to the investigation are encouraged to email Dr. Tameiko Grant, head of the district’s professional standard's office, at GrantT1@duvalschools.org.”