Teacher Plays Homophobic Prank On Student, Apparently Desperate For High-Fives From Teenagers

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Man shockedA Canadian school teacher has temporarily lost his teaching license for writing, “I’m gay” on a piece of masking tape and then sticking it on a student’s back during one of his classes. Apparently, he felt the need to fit in with his teenage students by acting like a cruel teenager himself. Get out. Now.

Daniel Mark Ogloff is a machine and metal shop teacher at Aldergrove Community Secondary School in Langley, British Columbia. This incident, which involved an 11-grader, occurred a year ago on September 24th of 2013. According to The Huffington Post: 

After Ogloff placed the tape on the student’s back, he then “gestured ‘shhh’ to the students,” and “pointed at another student and mouthed words to the effect, ‘It was him.’”

Meanwhile, other students were laughing and taking photos.

He then let the student leave the class with the sign still on his back. He described this to school officials as “horseplay.” That November, the school district gave him a 10-week unpaid suspension, asked him to participate in “restorative action” with the student, gave him a mandatory mentorship with another teacher, and had him complete some courses for the district. I’m assuming these were sensitivity courses. And perhaps one on professionalism. Followed by an additional class on How Not To Be A Douchebag. Now, the B.C. Commissioner of Teacher Regulation has also taken away his teaching license for the first two weeks of the current school year (he may return after October 5th).

This is not the first time Ogoloff, who has been teaching since 2008, has been in trouble at his school. In 2011, he received a verbal warning for comments he made to seventh graders, and in 2012 he got a written warning for a comment he made to a twelfth grader. In the latter case, a student approached him and asked why she was the only one failing his class. He loudly mocked her in front of the other students, saying, “She wants to know why you’re passing and she’s not. You are never here and you don’t do anything in class.”

Ogoloff has admitted that what he did last September was unprofessional and has agreed to his suspension. He is not allowed to comment on the case. But I am, and I will say that it breaks my heart that students at these ages, who are so vulnerable emotionally, should be betrayed by one of the few people in school who are supposed to protect them: their teacher. Just because teenagers love when their friends make jokes about penises, doesn’t mean that their teacher should share a good dick joke with them in order to gain their approval. Be the grown-up, dammit.

(Photo: Pathdoc / Shutterstock)