Project Veritas has released more undercover footage from inside teachers union offices. The video features Nick Nugent, Executive Director of the South Oakland Districts Association for the Michigan Education Association, apparently violating Michigan Child Protection Law regarding mandated reporting.
On April 24th 2018 at Nugent’s office in Lathrup Village, Michigan, a Project Veritas undercover journalist posed as a MEA member who pushed a student down in class, knocking the student’s head against the edge of the board. The MEA official explained the union’s position to protect the member who abused a student:
“This is a tough one because, if we report it you’re gonna get investigated. And I don’t want you to get investigated.”
Nugent then advises the teacher to “wait it out” and “take some time off” because “the longer the time goes on, the [student’s wound] will heal.”
Later in the meeting, Nugent explains that the “worst-case scenario” for the teacher would be an investigation that would bring the teacher up on tenure charges. The process, Nugent explains, would involve a settlement agreement the union would help negotiate:
“With that you do what we call a settlement agreement. You choose to resign, and they will pay you out a certain amount of money… The soonest they would get a hearing is probably October, November. And they would have to continue to pay your health care.”
Nugent states his belief that if they were to report the incident, “they’re probably gonna put you on admin leave… And you get paid during that time, but ultimately, I’m worried they would take your teacher tenure.”
After the Project Veritas journalist further describes how badly the student was hurt, Nugent said “It is truly up to” the teacher on whether or not to report the incident, despite the union’s policy on mandatory reporting of child abuse.
Nugent also describes past incidents in the districts he manages where teachers got away with physically abusing students:
“I’ve had where teachers have pushed kids and pushed them down and it hasn’t come out… I’ve had it where, like I had a coach one time, and he’s a teacher too, you know push a kid, I mean push him down on the ground. It was reported, and then he ended up with a six-day suspension.”