MENDOCINO, California –
The John G. Downey grade school is under scrutiny for hiring a registered sex offender to head classes. However, some parents are quick to voice their appreciation for the teacher’s dedication and passion for the job.
Jonothan Alber Metz has been a registered sex offender for nearly 13 years, with two separate arrests on his record. But that didn’t stop him from landing the job as a sixth-grade teacher J.G. Downey.
“He’s got a knack for working with kids,” Says superintendent Marie Worthright. “We understand his past record, and have taken the utmost precaution in vetting him during the hiring process to make sure that is all behind him.”
While Worthwright feels secure in her decision, some lawmakers and community members have already voiced concerns about Metz being in close proximity to the children. Curiously, however, the parents of students in Metz’s class have nothing but fond words for the sex offender.
“I can’t think of a more attentive teacher for the kids,” said Bill Covington, whose daughter takes part in Metz core studies class. “He not only works hard to help the kids understand the subject, but he takes time out of his personal days to tutor them. I’ve never seen a teacher so willing to stay after class with his students. He even takes the kids on weekend field trips. It really gives us parents some much-needed alone time.”
Echoing the praise, Merriam Merth stated, “He’s great with making eye contact with the kids, and letting them know he’s listening. He has a real passion for children, you can tell.”
Metz is up for teacher of the year in the Academic Board of California Awards. Students could not be reached for comment. Most simply stated Metz was “whatever” and many indicated they didn’t want to talk about it.