December 5, 2011 9:19 pm

St. Albert teacher on personal leave after screening ‘inappropriate’ harrassment video


ST. ALBERT, Alta. – A St. Albert teacher who showed his Grade 7 class a controversial sexual harassment video is on personal leave but will return to the classroom in January.

The work place sexual harassment video was shown to the class as part of a three part series on racism, discrimination and sexual harassment at WD Cutts Junior High School.

Parents and school officials met Monday night to discuss the video.

The video turned out to be a parody that contained many overt sexual references and vulgar language. Many parents at the meeting admitted the video was not appropriate for the 11 and 12 year olds, but were divided on what action should be taken against the teacher.

“The guy made a mistake,” says Rob Corrigan whose son attends WD Cutts, “and he deserves a second chance. My son’s having a great time in his class and we’d hate to see him leave.”

“There’s no chance that I will allow this teacher to come back to school,” says parent Steve Claussen, who first reported the incident after his daughter told him what had occurred. “if we have to get a legal team involved that’s exactly what we’ll do.”

The school district wouldn’t say if the teacher’s leave, which began on Monday, was voluntary or otherwise.

“We are taking some disciplinary action,” explains St. Albert Protestant School District Superintendent Barry Wowk, “and I can tell you that the teacher will be returning to the class in the future sometime.”

The teacher is expected to return to the classroom when students return from Christmas break on January 9.

School board officials will speak to students Tuesday about the incident.

With files from Quinn Ohler

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