86-Page Book Could Cost Teacher $300,000

Claim centers around 86-page book

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    NEWSLETTERS

    AP

    If an arbitrator's ruling stands, a former Bay Area high school teacher is going to have to cough up most of the $300,000 she received in a hard-fought suit against her employers, the Times-Herald reported Monday. 

    Vernetta Northcutt signed a confidentiality agreement and the district says an 86-page book she wrote breaks that agreement.

    The arbitrator has sided with the district, pending a final ruling.

    We aren't talking about a bestseller here. There are less than two dozen copies of the book in print. Northcutt admitted to the paper the book is about her battles with the district, but she said that there wasn't anything secretive in it, adding a lot of the information was also in the newspapers.

    The legal back and forth goes back seven years when the principal of Vallejo High School reassigned Northcutt from one class to another because of failure rates. Northcutt claimed the move violated her contract and said that it was racially-motivated.

    Even if the final ruling continues to swing toward the district, Northcutt may not have the money to pay back. The arbitrator fees alone add up to $7,300, according to the paper.

    The district seemed to be ready for that, and has already suggested that if she can't come up with the money, they want to discontinue her healthcare coverage.

    The district would not comment on the case.