Show and Tell With Tiger's Kindergarten Teacher

Good morning class, today we're going to talk about bullies, name-calling and infidelity

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Tiger Woods' former teacher explains why she's asking for an apology.

    Another woman from Tiger Woods' past came forward Friday.

    Woods' kindergarten teacher was at attorney Gloria Allred's Los Angeles office Friday morning for a news conference.

    Yes, his kindergarten teacher.

    Allred and Maureen Decker discussed comments Woods made in a 2005 book by former NBA star Charles Barkley. Here's the text in question: "I became aware of my racial identity on my first day of school, on my first day of kindergarten. A group of sixth graders tied me to a tree, spray-painted the word 'n-----' on me, and threw rocks at me. That was my first day of school. And the teacher really didn't do much of anything."

    Woods' Teacher Explains: Why Now?

    [LA] Woods' Teacher Explains: Why Now?
    Tiger Woods' former teacher explains why she's asking for an apology.

    Woods' comments appeared in Barkley's book, "Who's Afraid of a Large Black Man?"

    According to an e-mail from Allred's office, the teacher "believes that no such incident ever occurred to Tiger Woods while he was under her care as a kindergarten pupil on the first day of class..."

    "...We think it is time for Tiger Woods to do the right thing and retract his statement."

    Allred said she planned to send a letter to Woods' representatives Friday. She will ask for a retraction and apology.

    "I was shocked, saddened and disappointed by his false accusations," Decker said Friday.

    Decker, who was Woods' teacher at Cerritos Elementary School in 1981, already addressed her former pupil's comments in a 2004 book by Howard Sounes. In "The Wicked Game," Decker said, "It's untrue. Absolutely untrue. None of it ever happened."

    Turn to pages 127-128 for more.

    So why bring this up now?

    "The accusations were brought up again when Tiger's infidelities came to light. My family and friends started reminding me of how he slandered me," Decker said. "I am asking Tiger for a private and public apology to put my mind at ease and set the record straight.

    "I couldn't get through to him. I left message at his foundation. No return calls. There was no way for me as an individual to get through to him."

    Join the line -- earlier this year, a former porn star and Allred demanded an apology from Woods. A tearful Veronica Siwik-Daniels, known as Joslyn James in her porn films, said at a news conference she feels Woods owes her an apology. 

    Decker said she has been a teacher for about 25 years. She retired twice, most recently five years ago.

    Oh, and about Woods' sex life? Most of the questions involved Decker's situation, but one reporter -- who may or may not have raised her hand -- asked Ms. Decker whether she felt Woods' affairs were part of a pattern of lies.

    "I shouldn't say this," she said, before saying this: "But I felt that what goes around comes around."

    Allred then asked her how she felt about Woods' extra-marital relationships.

    "That upsets me because her mother is a dear person," Decker said. "I feel sorry for his family. Some of these girls, I kind of feel sorry for them, too."

    Allred and Decker also assigned some homework -- Barkley's book and a videotape called "The Tiger Woods Story," which Allred said includes a scene of Woods with a bloody nose "in the bathroom with a kindergarten teacher."

    Now if someone could just find a VCR.

    Woods returns to professional golf at this month's Master's tournament in Augusta, Ga.