ANDOVER , Mass. (Eagle-Tribune Online) — School was almost out for the year and a group of women colleagues wanted to give retiring Shawsheen Elementary School staffer Betsey Jankauskas a memorable send-off. Principal Moira O’Brien and seven of her staff joined in the fun by posing on desks and in beach towels for a gag photo calendar.
It seemed innocent enough last spring. The children were gone for the day. Time for some laughs. Distribution of the calendar would be limited to Jankauskas and those pictured in the 12-page color scrapbook – “Betsey’s Girls.”
No one thought there would be repercussions. Not even Suzy Fischer, a special education preschool teacher who said she was asked by the principal to shoot the sexy photos.
But that was before O’Brien advised Fischer in March that her teaching contract would not be renewed for undisclosed reasons, and Fischer responded with a formal discrimination complaint against O’Brien and the Andover public schools for unlawful dismissal.
Now, the photos taken a year ago for the women’s eyes only have gotten wider circulation in connection with Fischer’s legal action – and parents who support retaining her at Shawsheen School are using them as evidence of the principal’s poor judgment.
If you’re going to make a gag “Calendar Girls” calendar, don’t fire the photographer…