UPDATE: March 13, 2013: The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) has agreed to pay approximentally $30 million to settle 58 lawsuits over allegations of sexual misconduct by a former teacher at Miramonte Elementary school.
According to Stephen Ceasar, Richard Winton and Teresa Watanabe reporting for the Los Angeles Times,it is the largest payout in a case involving a single teacher in the district's history. Each of the victims will receive about $470,000 under the preliminary deal.
The California Report noted that, although a judge must still approve it, the district has been in mediation with the students and families for months.
LAUSD's general council David Holmquist (above) said of the settlement, "We're not admitting liability but we realize it's a tragic circumstance for sure. Students have definitely suffered and so what we think is in the best interest for students is to put this behind us."
Written by Taylor McCulloch.
December 20, 2012: It's the largest settlement ever awarded in a school district molestation case -- and it's not the biggest case on the docket.
Reporting in the Los Angeles Times yesterday, Howard Blume and Stephen Ceasar note that the jury award of $6.9 million to a then-fifth grade student who was molested at Queen Anne Place Elementary School (preK-5, mid-city LA) by a teacher who is currently serving a 16-year prison sentence "suggests L.A. Unified could end up paying a large amount of money to wrap up the close to 200 pending legal claims related to the [Miramonte Elementary School teacher molestation case].
...Attorneys for [Queen Anne Place Elementary School] insisted that district staff could not have known what [the molesting teacher] was doing. But the plaintiffs argued there were abundant warning signs, including when a girl in [the molester's] class said the teacher had stroked her hair and touched her buttocks.
"Some of the same issues in the Miramonte case are highlighted here," said attorney Don Beck, who represented the student [from Queen Anne], "the same lack of monitoring teachers, the same lack of supervision that allowed these events to happen."