Santa Clara Unified took nearly two months to respond to Flyâs request for sexual harassment complaints by informing us that no such records exist. At least not from 2000 to May 3 of this year, according to Assistant Superintendent of School Support and District Development Andrew Lucia.
No claims, Lucia says, not even in response to Santa Clara High teacher Dominic Casertaâs alleged harassment of a few girls in spring of 2002, or seven years later when records indicate that he behaved inappropriately with yet another female student.
Thatâs because instead of looking up the relevant allegations, the school district took the liberty of narrowing the scope of Flyâs CPRA request for all claims of sexual harassment to just âwritten demand claim[s], or request[s] for damages.â
Even Santa Clara policeâwho failed to locate documentation of a 2002 incident memorialized in Casertaâs school personnel fileâapparently have a better handle on record-keeping and transparency than Lucia, whoâs in charge of monitoring such things for the U.S. Department of Educationâs civil rights division.
A search for police reports involving sex crimes at Santa Clara High alone turned up 45 incidents in the past decade, including four involving district employees.
On May 2, 2013, a former student reported having a sexual relationship with a teacher when she was 16 years old. On Sept. 23 that same year, a janitor reportedly found a teacher and a high school girl alone late at night in the teacherâs car and later found a mattress under the teacherâs desk, along with bras, panties and condoms.
On Jan. 8, 2016, a 16-year-old girl told cops she was âinappropriately touchedâ by a 46-year-old school employee. And on April 27, 2017, a 62-year-old male coach walked into the girlâs locker room while students were changing.
Further, a cursory Google search turns up headlines about ex-Wilcox High teacher Edward Slate pleading guilty to having sex with a student, Santa Clara High custodian Joe Miller recruiting students to model for him, SCH teacher Hugo Guzman being charged with statutory rape and Walden West counselor Edgar âPapa Bearâ Covarrubias getting busted for allegedly downloading child porn.