Muscogee school board votes to uphold teacher termination

Muscogee County school district appeal

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - A former Hardaway High School teacher fought his termination from the district and he took his argument straight to the members of the board of education at a fair dismissal hearing at the Muscogee County Public Education building Wednesday, September 17.

However, after five hours of testimony, the school board voted to unanimously uphold the decision to fire him.

Jim McNeely was a math teacher with 14 years in Muscogee County who claims he was inappropriately fired from his job. He hired attorney Ted Theus to represent him, and both he and the school's attorneys went back and forth on the issues.

The facts are that McNeely went on medical leave in 2011 and has not been teaching for the past three years.

McNeely said he's been suffering from a series of conditions that prevent him from returning to work.

He said he was officially fired in May of this year, and a district spokesperson says the reason is for abandoning his contract and failing to perform his duties.

Most of the discussion revolved around the communication between McNeely and representatives of the district's H.R. department and whether or not McNeely fulfilled his obligation to provide documentation of his conditions from doctors.

The district also made references to McNeely's performance in his various educational roles. A series of witnesses were called for both sides who both supported and refuted the claims about each issue.

In the end, officials were not swayed by McNeely's arguments.

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