OAKLAND, Calif. (CN) – Corinthian Colleges and its subsidiary, Everest College, fired an instructor because she told her students, truthfully, that the school is not accredited and cannot certify students in the medical trades, the teacher claims in Alameda County Court.
Valerie Munson claims she taught students about accreditation and certification as part of her medical law and ethics course.
Munson says that when a student asked her if the school was accredited, she truthfully answered that it was not. She said she truthfully said that students would not be certified upon graduation, could not transfer course units, and did not qualify to take continuing education classes.
Munson’s students were “enraged and emotionally devastated” at this news, and said they felt they were “lied to during enrollment,” according to the complaint.
Munson claims that when she went to her supervisors, they told her “words to the effect that none of the students were smart enough to have known about the accreditation matter” unless Munson brought it up.
Munson claims harassment and retaliation followed. She says her supervisors told her “to put a lid on the whole accreditation thing.”
She claims her bosses told her, “You know we cannot have this, because this could have a huge affect on our attrition,” according to the complaint.
Munson says she told her bosses by email that she “was committed to her students” and “would be truthful with them about the accreditation issues.”
A few weeks later, Munson says her supervisors retaliated by accusing her of putting her adult students’ “lives in danger” by taking them on a school-approved field trip to a restaurant for an end-of-session celebration.
Munson claims she was escorted “like a criminal” from the women’s bathroom to her supervisors’ office. She claims she was so distraught by this meeting that “she vomited and cried for nearly half an hour” afterward.
Munson claims the harassment culminated in her firing.
She seeks damages for lost wages, defamation, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. Her lead counsel is Beth Mora of San Ramon.
Corinthian Colleges has been sued at least 65 times since 2007, on a variety of issues, according to the Courthouse News database.