Teacher's certificate suspended after allegations of sex - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Teacher's certificate suspended after allegations of sex with student

(File: FOX Carolina) (File: FOX Carolina)

An Upstate teacher and coach had his teaching certificate suspended after an alleged inappropriate relationships with students, according to Greenville County school officials.

The teacher formerly worked at Wade Hampton High School from August 2006 to June 2013, where he was a math teacher and held various coaching positions for girls tennis, basketball and volleyball, according to officials.

In October 2012, a custodian at the school reported seeing the teacher go into the bathroom with a female student, according to documents from the South Carolina Board of Education. 

The school district said they investigated the matter and said the teacher used "extremely poor judgement," and he was given a written reprimand. The district told the teacher he could not call, text or instant message students, and meetings with students should take place in "recognized meeting areas within the school."

The teacher acknowledged the official reprimand in December 2012, according to school officials.

On May 10, an anonymous caller to the school district said the teacher had an inappropriate relationship with a female student, who the caller said was a different one from the prior incident, documents said.

In early October, the South Carolina Department of Education said they interviewed the student who was involved in the October 2012 incident. The student said that she initially considered him a mentor, but the relationship turned sexual.

According to suspension summary, the teacher provided the student alcohol one night when they stayed the night in a hotel.

The teacher resigned from the Greenville County School District on May 11 and was employed by the Beaufort County School District as a math teacher at Hilton Head High School following that, according to the documents.

According to the Department of Education, the teacher will be summarily suspended until a hearing is held.

Oby Lyles, a representative of the school district, said the teacher was investigated by both law enforcement and the school district in 2012, and there was no evidence of an inappropriate relationship with a student until September.

Lyles said in September, someone came forward with evidence supporting the allegations from October of the previous year. He said the district immediately shared that information with law enforcement and the state department of education.

According to Lyles, the Beaufort County School District did not contact the right person for a reference before they hired the teacher in Hilton Head. Lyles said Beaufort school district officials only contacted the references he listed, and did not contact the teacher's supervisor, the Wade Hampton High School principal. Lyles said the references the teacher listed did not know of the allegations.

The teacher has not been charged with any crime in connection with the accusations at this time.

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