What Almontaser's Lawsuit Says About Bloomberg, Joel Klein, D.O.E.

A 20-page lawsuit filed yesterday by former Khalil Gibran International Academy principal Debbie Almontaser says Michael Bloomberg and school officials forced her to resign last August.

According to the lawsuit, it all started during a telephone interview with a New York Post reporter who asked her about t-shirts printed with the phrase “Intifada NYC” that were designed by a company that rented space from a group Almontaser was associated with.

Melody Meyer of the D.O.E.’s press office was on the telephone call. She called Almontaser after the call was over and said, “Good job. I think it went well. Hopefully it will be okay tomorrow.

But after an unflattering article, the suit says, another D.O.E. official told Almontaser to write a public apology for her remarks. When that failed to stop the negative stories, people associated with the school asked for her resignation.

Almontaser appealed to Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott, who said he’d try to find her another job somewhere else, and "added that the mayor wanted her resignation by 8 a.m. the next morning so he could announce it on his radio show the next morning.”

Which is a considerably different version of events than what the Department of Education first put out.