The College investigates and considers complaints about members that relate to alleged professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacity. If the Investigation Committee concludes that a complaint does not relate to one of those three matters or is frivolous, vexatious or an abuse of process, it does not proceed with the complaint.
Approximately four out of five complaints are not referred to the Discipline Committee but are dismissed or resolved by other means. Examples of cases considered by the Investigation Committee and not referred to a hearing are provided here.
Complaint: Neglected to provide material appropriate to student’s
abilities and learning style
A parent of a Grade 6 student complained to the College about the teacher’s treatment of the student over the course of the school year and met with the principal on three occasions. The parent complained that the teacher refused to comply with the student’s gifted exceptionality, treated the student poorly and did not assess the student’s academic achievements appropriately.
A panel of the Investigation Committee instructed staff not to investigate the complaint because the allegations, even if proven true, did not relate to professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacity and would be more appropriately dealt with at the school level.
Complaint: Permitted student to wear inappropriate attire
A parent of a Grade 7 student complained to the College that the teacher permitted the student to wear a low-cut top with spaghetti straps, which did not conform to board policy.
The complaint was considered by a panel of the Investigation Committee and the panel instructed staff not to investigate because the allegation did not relate to professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacity.
Complaint: Unfair treatment by federation local executive
The complainant, a member of the College, had applied for a posted position and was dissatisfied with the outcome, alleging, among other things, that slanderous comments were made by colleagues when denying the member the opportunity to interview for the position.
A panel of the Investigation Committee instructed staff not to investigate the complaint because the allegations, even if proven true, did not relate to professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacity. The panel stated that matters such as these are not within the purview of the College and are more appropriately dealt with in other forums.
Complaint: Taking pictures of students with personal cellular telephone
and inappropriate language
A school board notified the College regarding its suspension of a teacher, pursuant to its obligation under the Ontario College of Teachers Act. The report on conduct included concerns that the member admitted to using a personal cellular telephone to take pictures of students while covering a Grade 2 class.
The board reported that the Children’s Aid Society and the police declined to investigate because there was no evidence without the cellular telephone, which the member said had been lost. The member was alleged to have, on another occasion while covering a Grade 7/8 class, used inappropriate language in telling students to clean up the mess they had left behind.
After a full investigation, the matter was considered by a panel of the Investigation Committee, which admonished the member in writing for failing to abide by the board’s policy with regard to student privacy and technology. The panel further admonished the member for the use of inappropriate language and advised the member to ensure that all interactions with students are appropriate.