‘Get Rid of Him:’ Community Pushes Against Possible Settlement with Former Yuba City Teacher

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YUBA CITY -- A small crowd wanted to make sure former physical education teacher and accused sexual predator Jim Whiteaker was not rewarded by the Yuba City Unified School District Wednesday.

"Enough is enough. We as a district don't reward our students for bad behavior nor should we be rewarding an employee for bad behavior," said Yuba City resident Brian Lowe.

Removed from the campus of Yuba City High School in January and recommended for termination by the district after a teenage girl claimed he touched her inappropriately, Whiteaker has been seeking redress about his job.

Those in attendance were convinced a quickly noticed special board meeting to discuss ongoing litigation was to possibly rubber stamp a settlement with him, an idea they wouldn't let go unchallenged.

"It sends the wrong message to this community. I know you care. Please stay strong," said resident Beckie Jennings. "I know you have to listen to your insurance carrier. I know you have to listen to your attorney. I hope you'll listen to us."

"Please, stick to your laurels. Stick to your gut," said resident Harsev Thiara Jr. "Stay strong, don't pay this man off. Get rid of him."

Since the allegation that led to his firing, students Whiteaker has taught over the last 20 years have come forward, accusing him of physical and sexually-based mistreatment.

He and the district are being sued over the alleged pattern of abuse that went unchecked.

To date, Whiteaker has maintained his innocence and has not been convicted of anything.

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