Vancouver teacher disciplined for 'insulting' religion on Facebook | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Vancouver teacher disciplined for 'insulting' religion on Facebook

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February 25, 2020 - 1:33 PM

A veteran Vancouver high school teacher has been reprimanded for comments he made about religion on Facebook.

John William Yetman wrote “intemperate and insulting comments about religion” on his public Facebook page under an ad inviting people to Open Mosque Day B.C.

According to the B.C. Commissioner for Teacher Regulation decision published Feb. 25, Yetman made the comment on his publicly accessible Facebook page where he identified himself as a teacher at the Vancouver School Board.

“Members of the public saw Yetman’s post, and some reported feeling concerned that a teacher would display this level of intolerance,” says the decision.

Yetman, a teacher with the Vancouver School District since 1989, posted his Facebook comments under an Open Mosque Day BC ad which encouraged people to “explore BC’s major Mosques as we open doors to welcome everyone.”

The decision does not say what Yetman wrote on Facebook but it appears his comments were about religion in general and did not single out Islam.

When Yetman learnt about the concern over his comment, he removed them, along with other Facebook comments insulting other major religions.

The commissioner says Yetman’s behaviour “raises the concern that students in his classroom may not be treated in a respectful fashion” and the language he used “was discourteous and disrespectful.” The decision goes on to say he “expressed himself in a public fashion and indicated he was a member of the teaching profession in the Vancouver public system.”

The incident took place in January 2019, and the school district filed a report to the Commissioner regarding the incident the following month.

According to the decision, the teacher entered into a consent resolution agreement and agreed his actions constituted professional misconduct and conduct unbecoming for a teacher. There is no indication the teacher was fined or received any type of suspension following the incident.

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