(CN) – A San Diego school properly fired a teacher who solicited sex in a graphic Craigslist advertisement, a California appeals court ruled.
Frank Lampedusa began working in the San Diego school district in 1999 and advanced to the position of dean of students at Farb Middle School in 2005.
In late June 2008, however, a man identifying himself as the parent of a Farb student told district officials that Lampedusa had posted an ad containing obscene text and photos of his face, genitalia and anus on Craigslist’s men-seeking-men section.
A superintendent in charge of Farb asked Lampedusa to remove the listing, which he did after it had been on Craigslist for two days.
About five months later, the district suspended Lampedusa and issued a notified of his upcoming dismissal.
Appearing before the Commission of Professional Competence, Lampedusa said he posted the ad hoping to meet someone for sexual relations and that he had posted five or six ads in the past. He added that he never intended for students to see the ad listing, which he expected to be adult and private.
Finding no cause for his dismissal, the commission said Lampedusa could resume his position as dean, and a county court refused to review the decision.
But the San Diego Unified School District found success with the 4th District appeals court near Balboa Park, which found that administrators had justification to fire Lampedusa.
“The evidence shows both evident unfitness to serve as a teacher and that Lampedusa engaged in immoral conduct, either of which constituted grounds for termination,” Justice Gilbert Nares wrote on behalf of the court.
“While Lampedusa’s conduct may not have been blameworthy in the sense he was seeking a date, it was extremely blameworthy in the pornographic, obscene manner that he did so,” he added.