MOUNT VERNON — John Freshwater, who was fired from his position a Mount Vernon middle school teacher in January, has filed an appeal with the Fifth District Court of Appeals.
He first filed an appeal with the Knox County Court of Common Pleas in an effort to get his job back. Judge Otho Eyster supported the board’s decision to terminate Freshwater’s employment, and Freshwater is now contesting Eyster’s ruling.
The appellant brief was written on Freshwater’s behalf by attorney Kelly Hamilton in conjunction with the Rutherford Institute. It states, in part: “The court below abused its discretion in finding that there was clear and convincing evidence to support the Board of Education’s termination of Freshwater’s employment contract(s) for good and just cause, in affirming the Board’s termination of Freshwater’s employment contract(s), and in ordering Freshwater to pay the costs of the appeal.”
The brief contends there never was a “good and just” cause for the board to fire Freshwater, and says the Knox County Court was in error because it “simply affirmed the Board’s decision without conducting its own hearings or offering any explanatory analysis.”
Freshwater is asking the appeals court to “reverse the decision of the court below upholding the Board’s Resolution; award him monetary damages in an amount to be determined as a result of his wrongful termination and the interference with his rights under the First and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution; order that the Board reinstate him to his teaching position; and order such other relief as the Court may deem appropriate.”
It is unclear at this time as to when the case will be heard by the appeals court.