In 2004, an arbitrator ruled that, Cary Hershkowitz, a 52 year old Manhattan high-school teacher, suspended after admitting he sent sexually explicit e-mails to a 16 year old female student, can return to the classroom next year. He gets to keep his $70,000 a year job as a chemistry teacher at Health Professions and Human Services High School, even though he asked the girl if she would want to have sex; both with others and me. The ruling was made on the grounds that he was never offered union representation when investigators questioned him. This claim was denied by the city Department of Education. Hershkowitz has been suspended with pay from the school since May 1999, when his arbitration hearing began. Under the latest decision, he is suspended without pay until he returns next year.

The decision infuriated city officials, who refused to put him back in a classroom.  The city finally got good news yesterday when Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Rolando Acosta called the arbitrator's rulling totally irrational.

Hershkowitz may finally be headed for the unemployment line.  Acosta ordered another hearing on whether he should be fired.

(New York)