B.C. teacher suspended for joke about student's father's serious car accident | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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B.C. teacher suspended for joke about student's father's serious car accident

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May 04, 2021 - 1:00 PM

A B.C. teacher with a history of using poor words and jokes with students was given a two-day suspension of her teaching certificate, in part for making a joke about a serious car accident a student’s father was involved in.

A few days after the accident in February 2019, in which the student’s father suffered serious injuries, Julie Gagnon was teaching the class about convex mirrors.

“The only thing you can see upside down is something that is upside down like, for example (the student’s father’s) car,” she said, according to a consent resolution agreement with the B.C. Commissioner for Teacher Regulation.

When a friend of the student complained about the joke, Gagnon responded by telling the student she would be able to laugh about the accident at some point.

She got a disciplinary letter for that.

Gagnon, who teaches at a French Immersion school somewhere in B.C., was also cited for a lack of understanding about the challenges another student was facing, including by openly telling the student they failed a test in front of other students.

In another incident, also in February 2019, Gagnon left her class while two students were behaving aggressively and while absent, the students got into a physical fight which was filmed by other students. She had already been told to never leave her classroom unattended.

Those weren’t her only transgressions. Two years earlier, she told a student their actions were “psychopathic.” She had been previously warned about her ‘jokes’ and told to be more careful about her language.

Gagnon was suspended for two days, ordered to take remedial teaching courses.

You can find the entire decision here.

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