Brizard began working as CEO of the Chicago Public Schools in May, but the start of his new job was marred by news of the lawsuits, which allege age bias and “punitive practices” against teachers who crossed him in Rochester.
One suit, filed by the EEOC, says Brizard was biased against older workers, allegedly firing one 58-year-old deputy superintendent because of her age. He also allegedly told a group of teachers, “You all are old.”
The EEOC investigated and found probable cause that the teacher had been fired because of her age, race and sex.
Another lawsuit accuses Brizard of “punitive and insensitive” practices against teachers and administrators facing discipline or termination. He allegedly assigned them to meaningless work for months at a time before firing them.
That led the Rochester Teachers Association to file class-action grievances against Brizard, and members of the union issued a resounding vote of no-confidence in him before he accepted the Chicago appointment.
- Base all decisions on legit business needs--and then be sure to document your reasoning
- Conduct truly independent investigations to ferret out retaliation by rogue supervisors
- Employee can't work well with others? Document that claim!
- HR's uneven response to graffiti and swastikas: 'Close' counts in horseshoes ... not harassment
- Consider ADA needs, FMLA requests separately