There’s an old joke that calls duct tape the all-purpose kid trainer, but according to the Akron Beacon Journal Online on Jan. 22, Melissa Cairns, an Ohio teacher, may have taken that a bit too literally. The middle school math teacher is facing allegations that she duct-taped the mouths of some of her students and then posted a photo of it on her personal Facebook page.
Ms. Cairns has been teaching in the district since 2007. Her school personnel file indicates, however, that she was placed on a “Plan of Assistance” to help her teaching skills. She has until Jan. 26 to respond to the allegations and could very well be terminated from her job.
The photo in question reportedly depicts eight or nine students with duct tape on their mouths with a caption that says, “Finally found a way to get them to be quiet!!!”
A colleague and friend saw the photo on Cairns’s Facebook page and notified a supervisor. The school principal notified parents of the children in the photograph and asked Cairns to delete the photo. The photo is no longer on Cairns’s Facebook page.
A referee has been requested who will conduct an investigation and then make a recommendation to the school board on the case.
Ms. Cairns has an unlisted phone number and is currently not answering her Facebook messages.
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