Dabah Almontaser Update.
“Federal Judge Rules Against Ex-Khalil Gibran Principal,” by Charles Maldonado in the Brooklyn Eagle (thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist):
CENTRE STREET — A ruling by Manhattan Federal Court Judge Sidney Stein Wednesday will mean the Department of Education will not be forced to reconsider Debbie Almontaser’s application to be reinstated as principal of Brooklyn Arabic language school the Khalil Gibran Academy. Stein ruled that Almontaser’s lawsuit, alleging that the DOE had violated her First Amendment rights in forcing her to resign the position after a controversial August interview in the New York Post, was unfounded. However, the DOE will delay its announcement of a permanent principal from tomorrow until Friday to allow Almontaser to take her case before the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals.
DOE attorney James Lemonedes said that he felt Stein’s decision would hold up, and the department would be allowed to go ahead. […]
“The Department of Education’s press office was intimately involved with that interview,” said Stein. “The plaintiff’s comments to the Post were manifestly part of her duties.”
Stein also said Almontaser’s comments and the media controversy surrounding her were potentially disruptive enough to justify the DOE”s decision not to rehire her. Almontaser’s attorney, Alan Levine, said the “disruption” was blown out of proportion and was not affecting the opening of the school. “With all due respect, it was some calls from some parents,” he said, adding that he felt Stein had reached “the outer limits in deference to an employer” in his decision for the public schools.
Almontaser was asked to resign from the position after making comments about a group producing “Intifada NYC” T-shirts in a New York Post article last summer. In the article, she explained the root meaning of the word intifada, without expressly condemning the T-shirts or the organization producing them.