Teacher's Firing for 1974 Marijuana Misdemeanor Upheld
The law that stripped Bloom Township High School (IL) teacher Mike Maynard of his teaching position because of a 23-year-old conviction for marijuana possession was upheld on April 8. Maynard challenged the 1985 law, which prohibits people with certain criminal convictions from holding a teaching license, but Cook County Circuit Judge Dorothy Kinnaird said she could not find any "persuasive authority" to overturn it (Mark Brown, "Judge upholds firing of teacher for drugs," Chicago Sun-Times, April 9, 1997, p. 14; Robert Becker, "Ex-Bloom teacher's suit fails to win his job back," Chicago Tribune, April 9, 1997, s. 2, p. 8).
School officials fired Maynard during his second year of teaching at the school after they discovered his marijuana misdemeanor conviction during a routine background check (see "Illinois Teacher Fired for 1974 Marijuana Misdemeanor, Files Lawsuit to Challenge State Law," NewsBriefs, November 1996). Maynard has asked Illinois Governor Jim Edgar for a pardon.