Brevard teacher who officials say urged students to vote Obama fired

Fate of Brevard Community College teacher decided in 3-1 vote

Published On: Apr 18 2013 05:26:41 AM EDT   Updated On: Apr 17 2013 12:12:00 PM EDT
Teacher who urged students to vote Obama faces termination
BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. -

Brevard Community College Associate Professor Sharon Sweet was fired Wednesday morning at a hearing after she was accused to soliciting students to vote for Obama in the November election.

Sweet will have the ability to appeal the decision through arbitration or to request an appeal hearing. A motion to terminate passed 3-1.

College officials say Sweet forced students to sign pledge cards promising their vote to the democratic candidate, Florida Today reports.

"Sweet's actions caused students to feel considerable discomfort, to believe their privacy was being invaded, to fear their grade could be negatively impacted if they refused to sign the pledge cards, and to feel intimidated," a statement, issued earlier this school year, said.

Attorney Thomas Brooks, representing Sweet, said that the three-month investigation wasn't thorough enough because not every student was interviewed.

“We don’t think the evidence is anywhere near sufficient to make that kind of radical, career-ending decision,” Brooks said.

After the vote, Brooks said they plan on appealing the board’s decision.
"We're disappointed," he said.

College Trustees voted unanimously that the college policy on no college employees should solicit for a political candidate was broken. 

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