October 4-- The attorney for the Montgomery County school board spent Tuesday challenging the credibility of former Montgomery County High School teacher Christopher Bowman who is suing the school board for firing him four years ago.
Bowman was ordered out of the school by former school superintendent Dale Clark on March 20, 2007, the same day she learned he had reported alleged sexual misconduct by her daughter, a high school counselor, with a high school student. He was paid for the remainder of his contract which expired in June, 2007.
Bowman was on the stand three hours Tuesday where he admitted he had resigned from Walker County High School rather than contest charges that he ignored drinking by students. Three months later he was hired by Montgomery County High School where he had problems doing the job as an ag teacher and ended up on a remedial program for two years.
The school system claims it was Bowman's failure to follow instructions which led to his job loss. Dale Clark told the court, "We would not be here today if he had followed the chain of command" in reporting O'Connor. Bowman reported the case to a juvenile justice officer at the school, Gil McDaniel, who gave him a tape recorder to secretly tape two students about the case and who later called in the GBI.
Bowman later moved back to his native Chattooga County and applied twice for a job at his alma mater, Chattooga County High School, where he was interviewed by Ag Program supervisor Jimmy Dean. Dean turned him down after talking with Luke Smith in Mount Vernon and learning Bowman had been fired. In a deposition, Dean said Bowman never told him he had been fired nor that he was in a program to improve his job performance.
Federal District Judge Dudley Bowen turned down three motions by defense attorney Chris Steinmetz that he issue a verdict for the school system. The judge says he wants to hear more testimony from witnesses Wednesday at the federal courthouse in Dublin.