South Suburban School Counselor Fired Over Sexually Graphic Book
RICHTON PARK, Ill. (CBS) — A south suburban school district has fired the guidance counselor and former basketball coach who wrote a book that some say crossed the line, sexually speaking.
As WBBM Newsradio’s Bob Conway reports, Bryan Craig, who had been a faculty member at Rich Central High School since 2004, drew controversy after the publication of a SouthtownStar report on a book he wrote, “It’s Her Fault,” which contains his controversial and often crude views on women and sex.
LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s Bob Conway reports
The book in question, which is self-published and available via Amazon, is intended to provide relationship advice and the differences in personality between women and men.
But critics have taken issue with some of Craig’s views, including, as quoted by the Chicago Sun-Times, the position that “the easiest kill for a man is through a young lady with low self-esteem.”
The book also includes graphic sexual material, including a detailed description about the differences in the vaginas of women of different races, the newspaper reported.
The book has racked up several scathing reviews on Amazon. One customer called it “a disgusting piece of crap and no woman in her right mind would want to be anywhere near a man who believed in anything written here.”
The Rich Township High School District 227 board voted 6 to 0 to fire Craig. Board member Alyssa Hernandez was absent.
“Mr. Craig’s conduct in this matter fell far short of our expectations and evoked outrage from me, members of this board and many others in our district who have come to expect the highest level of professionalism and sound judgment from the people they entrust with their children each day,” Board President Betty Owens said. “Our actions tonight bring a swift conclusion to this matter and to Mr. Craig’s employment with the district and allow us to return to our priorities of preparing District 227 students for success in school and in life.”
Craig is disputing the decision, and is considering filing a lawsuit against the district and appealing to the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board, his attorney said.
“We regret the board’s decision. It’s a clear violation of Mr. Craig’s First Amendment rights,” attorney Stephen Richards said. “Mr. Craig is not going to let this matter rest.”
Officials said Craig had a hearing Monday during which he was given a list of charges and an explanation of the evidence against him, and he was given the opportunity to explain himself. Richards said he didn’t represent Craig at the hearing, but he doesn’t believe Craig should have been fired because the book was not related to his employment.
“Mr. Craig was wronged,” Richards said.
Before the controversy went viral, Supt. Donna Simpson Leak said she had known about the book for about a week and said Craig “has his constitutional right to free speech.” He was suspended later that day.
Craig, 33, of Matteson, has been a faculty member since 2004 and is tenured. He could not be reached for comment.
Craig also faced controversy as a basketball coach when the IHSA ruled in February that Rich Central had to forfeit 16 regular-season games for allowing an ineligible transfer student to play.
The SouthtownStar contributed to this report, via the Sun-Times Media Wire.
(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2012. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)