Teacher wins in court but loses job after controversy with former student

Teacher was acquitted of sexually assaulting former student but was fired for inappropriate communications with the girl
By Jeffrey R. Smith
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 01/06/2016

A Newfoundland and Labrador school district wrongfully suspended without pay a teacher following allegations of improper communication with a young student, but did have just cause to dismiss him, an arbitration board has ruled.

Lloyd Whitehorne, 46, was a teacher in an elementary school in Western Newfoundland. He was hired in 2004 and was subject to the collective agreement between the school district and the teacher’s union. The collective agreement had provisions for disciplinary action that stated “any teacher who is suspended or dismissed shall be provided written notification with five calendar days” of the reasons for dismissal. The collective agreement also stipulated that teachers subject to an investigation could only be suspended with pay before the investigation reached a conclusion.