LOS ANGELES (LALATE) – Heidi Kaeslin’s websites and photos online are getting defended by her former students. Heidi Kaeslin (pictures below) allegedly maintained four websites including RandHentertainment.com and 360pig.com. On at least one of those websites, Heidi Kaeslin appeared fully clothed wearing an “I Heart Teachers” t-shirt. Now her former students are speaking out, stating that they loved Heidi Kaeslin as their teacher and don’t see any wrongdoing with her alleged actions.
Heidi Kaeslin’s case is in some ways is no different than other teacher business scandals of the last few years. In this case, an educator is accused of business activities outside the classroom, that allegedly had nothing to do with the classroom. The issue, like previous cases, is the school’s code of conduct.
Kaeslin wasn’t a new teacher to her district. She has been employed in the Lincoln Unified since 2002. She initially was a girls’ soccer coach. In this case, her employer reportedly adopted a code of conduct one year after Kaeslin started working for the district. The Code of Ethics of the Education Profession was reportedly adopted in 2003, but Kaeslin is accused of conduct beginning online in 2011.
Cases before Kaeslin usually turn on interpretations of each code. Most often the code require teachers to disclose conduct to officials. In this case however the code only required her to “adhere to the highest ethical standards” and “to attain and maintain the highest possible degree of ethical conduct.”
But when does conduct trigger a violation? The code is not particularly clear in this case, reports local news. The conduct must have “involve jeopardy to student welfare; evidence malice, serious incompetency or bad judgment; or show a consistent pattern of misconduct.”
Former students don’t see how the alleged business conduct in this case amounted to a violation. And yet, critics are curious about how the scandal allegations came to a head.
In a similar case roughly a year ago elsewhere, a teacher’s extracurricular business activities were revealed by vindictive students cut by their teacher from a volleyball team. In this case, Kaeslin’s alleged boyfriend tells new that he believes that Kaeslin’s ex-husband triggered the investigation. “He said he believes the investigation was triggered when her husband discovered the affair and alerted school authorities out of spite” the RecordNet reports.
The boyfriend says that the allegations against Kaeslin are false, that while she does appear in pictures clothed online, her business involvement has been allegedly misconstrued by critics.
For now, officials aren’t stating much. “We’re conducting an investigation,” Lincoln Unified Superintendent Tom Uslan said in a news statement. Officials are trying to determine whether Kaeslin did work on the websites with a school issued laptop.
The businesses reportedly included a Facebook account (R&H Entertainment) which has reportedly been deleted. “R&H Entertainment is an up and coming entertainment company. Become a fan to order an I ? teachers t-shirt. R&H doesn’t discriminate against size” read the Facebook page when it was live.
In contrast, the randhentertainment.com website is still live and states “huge sale going on this week only”, but nothing is listed. An address and phone number is live on the website. RecordNet reports details from the websites have since allegedly been deleted. Kaeslin has yet to comment on the matter; she is on administrative leave from her job currently.