Skip to comments.Girl singled out for mono sues teachers
Posted on 05/10/2005 5:39:21 PM PDT by Cagey
Mononucleosis, the class was told, is a disease that "whores" get.
Former students at Mother McAuley Liberal Arts High School say that was part of a lesson given by a teacher who disclosed a student's case of mono and explained it was spread by "sexually active girls."
Now, the target of those comments -- 2004 graduate Rebecca Alvarado -- has filed suit against two teachers, the dean and principal at the all-girls Chicago Catholic school, claiming her privacy was violated and her reputation damaged.
The lawsuit, recently filed in Cook County Circuit Court, seeks in excess of $450,000.
Alvarado claims English teacher Judy Neary drove rumors that Alvarado had a disease "whores" get. She also names math teacher Nancy Vandertuuk and dean Carolyn McGovern in her complaint.
School's lawyer vows fight
Alvarado, who was hospitalized in March 2004 and missed a month of school because of mononucleosis, hepatitis, jaundice and dehydration, provided student affidavits claiming teachers drove rumors of her illness. She said she doesn't know how she got mono.
"People were saying I was a slut because of this," Alvarado said. "Everyone was staring at me like I was a freak. And when I was walking in the hallway, they'd point at me and laugh or say 'There she is. That's her.' It was terrible."
Sister Rose Wiorek, Mother McAuley's principal, said she wasn't aware of anybody on her staff discussing Alvarado's illness with students. John Coleman, an attorney representing the school, said, "We'll contest this in every fashion."
Alvarado's mother, Maricela Herrada, said she called McGovern to explain her daughter's illness.
'What they did was wrong'
An hour later, the suit says, Vandertuuk asked a class to pray for Alvarado, describing her illness and where she was hospitalized.
An hour after that, the suit said, Neary led a class discussion about Alvarado, telling them the "number one" group to get mononucleosis was "sexually active girls."
When a student asked if "whores" get that disease, the lawsuit claims that Neary replied, "Yes."
More classes heard the same lecture from Neary, it says, including a discussion about whom Alvarado was friends with and sleeping with.
"Students from several grades were now discussing and gossiping about Rebecca," the lawsuit says, "claiming she was easy, sleeping around, a slut, and were writing in bathroom stalls that she possessed sexually transmitted diseases."
Herrada said it had a negative impact on her daughter's grades and confidence, breaking down as she said, "What they did was wrong."
"To make a student feel like she's a whore? That she has no values?" she asked. "No one should have to go through what she did."
Oh my gosh...where do they get these teachers?
Damaging a young girl's reputation like this is a fine example to be setting in a Catholic school, ain't it?
Geesh. I was 18 and came down with it. I did not get it from kissing either.
My sister also came down with it and she had six relapses!!!
Teenage girls often get Mono from sharing sodas with their friends. From what I understand, it is usually spread through saliva. I can't imagine a teacher that would spread vicious gossip like that about a teenage girl. Its awful.
I got it at 16, probably from someone at the restaurant where I after-school waitressed. It sure wasn't from kissing, but I had a hard time convincing my parents of that!
The teacher probably just didn't like the girl, maybe for good reason, maybe not. Teachers are supposed to set a good example for their students by acting like adults, but they're capable of pettiness, too. A similar thing happened to me when I was in school. I didn't get along with one of my teachers, and she bad-mouthed me to other students.
Not just girls, guys too.
A bunch of my friends got it all at once, in the stupidest way possible.
One idiot (we'll never know which one) drank out of the gatorade bottle (the ole 64 ouncers) and a few of the guys poured it into cups.
Wound up with a bunch of guys all getting it.
Though I had bought the gatorade in the first place for them, I had my own and lucked out.
This teacher is not just ignorant, but vicious, and needs to be both fired and sued.
Wow! When I went to Catholic school, you couldn't think that word, never mind say it.
Do these teachers also tell the girls to "bind their protuberances", so as not to distract young men?
Although this is about a private school, I felt it was worthy of a ping.
I had a couple of teachers like that in high school and college.
Lucky for me, I also had teachers who liked me and were setting the record straight.
I found out when one teacher told me not to listen to anyone else, and that I really was a good kid and she could never see me hurting other people.
Needless to say, I wasn't amused and got details later on.
I'm usually very much against lawsuits, but I feel this one is appropriate...
Does anyone wonder how often the surfaces in schools are disinfected?
However, I am sick of this litigious sissified culture we are living in.
She could easily get an apology and a retraction. So someone indirectly called her a whore. This means she hets to take 450000$ by force?
I do think these teachers should be severely disciplined or fired though.
My seven year old son had it.
"I'm usually very much against lawsuits, but feel this one is appropriate..."
Me too, hope she wins.
Not only that, but you'd think that the last thing anyone in a Catholic-affiliated institution would want these days is exposure to a lawsuit!
I don't condone the comments by the teacher, but I also notice that the girl didn't deny the charges....
Also, the story doesn't indicate what type of hepatitis she had - and where she might have contracted that as well.....
I bet you could find someone around here that still believes that.
It's a common side effect of mono.
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