“Paxton’s attorney, Robin DesCamp, said none of Paxton’s comments merited a Title IX investigation”
It’s very interesting that the school claims there were complaints about things the professor said but is short on details.
Oregon Live reports:
Pacific University professor files $1.3 million lawsuit, claiming he was ousted from job over comments on gender, race
A tenured Pacific University professor is suing the school for $1.3 million, claiming he was illegally ousted from his position over comments he made about gender and race while teaching.
Richard Paxton, an education professor, has been on administrative leave with full pay and benefits since October, when Pacific University launched an investigation into complaints made against him. He filed a lawsuit Friday against the university and several of its administrators, claiming the investigation was “indefinite, unfounded, and unfair” and that he had been illegally fired from his position.
“We continue to be disappointed that Dr. Paxton will not participate in the investigation process under Title IX,” the university said Tuesday. “Given his lack of participation, this filing comes as no surprise.”
More than 10 undergraduate and graduate students in two academic programs filed complaints with the university between August and October 2020 over comments Paxton made during class regarding gender, gender identity, race and other “protected characteristics,” according to the university.
The complaints also indicated Paxton claimed he was immune to facing consequences for the comments because of his tenured status, the university said.
University officials placed Paxton on leave in October and launched a Title IX investigation into the complaints filed against him. Title IX is a federal civil rights law prohibiting sex-based discrimination in public education.
Paxton’s attorney, Robin DesCamp, said none of Paxton’s comments merited a Title IX investigation and that the university is using the law to circumvent tenured professors’ academic freedom protections.
“There was never any sexual misconduct,” DesCamp told The Oregonian/OregonLive. “[Pacific University] is embarking on a program to get rid of every old faculty member … because the older faculty members are expensive.”
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