Jr. College Fired Her For Answering A Student's Question

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A biology professor says San Jose Community College illegally fired her because a student claimed to be "offended" by her response to a question in a Human Heredity class. June Sheldon, who has a master's degree in biology, says she responded to a question about homosexuality by citing scientific research that indicates it may be related to maternal stress.

Sheldon says the student complained that Sheldon had spoken in class "about something that had no mention in the textbook," and that the student "found many parts of her lecture highly offensive and unscientific," leaving the student "horribly offended."

Be that as it may, Sheldon says, citing scientific literature in response to a question about human heredity in a human heredity class is not grounds for firing, under the college's own rules.

Sheldon says the student who filed the complaint objected to a comment she made in her class of June 21, 2007. She says that student dropped her class at 9:06 a.m. that day. The class met from 9 to 11 a.m.

Sheldon sued the seven trustees of the San Jose/Evergreen Community College District, and its chancellor and vice chancellor. She is represented in Federal Court by David Hacker of Folsom.

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