Thursday, December 20, 2007

Kim Curtis Gone

To follow up on our previous Kim Curtis post, Duke Students for an Ethical Duke has been told by two confidential sources with knowledge of personnel decisions that Kim Curtis, the political science professor who was sued by former student and lacrosse player Kyle Dowd for giving him a failing grade on the basis that he was a lacrosse player, will no longer be returning to Duke University for the spring of 2008. Duke was forced to settle with the Dowd family and changed both his grade and the grade of the only other lacrosse player in the class, who was also failed on the final assignment, to a "P" for passing. Though the Dowds amassed overwhelming proof of their allegations, and in spite of the settlement, Duke refuses to acknowledge that a violation took place and has continuously refused to reprimand Curtis or punish her in any way.

We have learned that Curtis and her husband Romand "Rom" Coles, both members of the Group of 88 and signers of both the listening ad and the clarification letter, are in the final paperwork stages of accepting employment from Northern Arizona University. Rom Coles has been a candidate for the McAllister Chair at NAU, and it seems that he has accepted the position (or obtained a different one).

Curtis has been one of the most outlandish condemners of the lacrosse team, frequenting protests, suggesting in writing that the aforementioned lacrosse players were guilty of obstruction of justice, and even donating to the Diane Catotti campaign for Durham City Council - a candidate who attempted to block an independent inquiry into the conduct of the Durham Police. Couple that with the almost undeniable grade retaliation and discrimination, and it is unthinkable that Duke has been content to allow this kind of conduct.

Though it is a welcome and somewhat reassuring development that Curtis will no longer have the power and authority to abuse Duke students, it remains a troubling matter that Duke continues to condone the kind of conduct she has displayed.

[Updated 7:51 pm 11/26/07]
Another relevant Curtis-link to Durham in Wonderland

[Edited 12:31 pm 1/10/08]
Our information was apparently incorrect. Apparently Kim Curtis will still be teaching one class during the Spring semester 2008. She and her husband will be leaving the following semester.

2 comments:

Carolyn said...

An earlier post of mine stated that the 2 lacrosse players Kim Curtis deliberately flunked were not the first victims of her punitive grading. A later commenter wanted to know what I was referring to. Here it is - copied from DIW's site from January 6, 2007. A mother identifying herself as "Judith" wrote that her own son, a member of ROTC, and an athlete, had been flunked by Kim Curtis a few years earlier for turning in the second paper (of three) 'one day late'. Though he continued to attend class and perform adequately, Curtis flunked him for the entire course "without explanation". When he protested, she "brought charges against him of Lying with the Duke Judicial Board. His hearing was scheduled in August, before classes even started, and he was unable to mount an effective defense. He was suspended for two semesters."

MS said...

I am a student at NAU and recently discovered that my Political Science professor is none other than Kim Curtis. I am an ROTC cadet and have different political viepoints than Prof. Curtis. She has come right out and said she does not agree with any military actions, that Republicans are misguided, and has silenced me several times while I express my viewpoints. Now that the time has come for final grades to be posted, I am severley worried.