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Dundee wants new Coleman hearing officer

PENN YAN—Dundee Central School District is requesting a different hearing officer to review the case of tenured social studies teacher Douglas Coleman. The district is attempting to fire Coleman.
Arguments by attorneys for the district and Coleman were heard by Yates County Judge W. Patrick Falvey Tuesday, March 15. The district requested a different hearing officer for the case because they feel a new set of eyes is needed. Following the hearing, District Superintendent of Schools Kathy Ring said, “The board has been committed to righting what they feel is a wrong.”
Coleman has been suspended several times over the years. In June 2010 he was suspended from his job as social studies teacher after the hearing officer found him guilty of several charges. The charges included threatening to kill a student, touching female students in an inappropriate manner, nicknaming students despite having been directed not to use nicknames in reference to students and regularly ignoring fair and consistent grading practices.
In January the hearing officer, Dennis Campagna, found Coleman guilty of conduct unbecoming a teacher. The charges included administering a test to his 12th grade government class that contained misspellings; was the same test used two years previously; tested at a lower academic level than should have been utilized for 12th grade students and contained inappropriate and suggestive vocabulary terms. The second charge was that Coleman made inappropriate references to a student with disabilities on a 12th grade government exam. The final charge listed was that Coleman attempted to bypass established district procedure with respect to utilization of movies within his class. Although still employed by the district, Coleman is not teaching and does not have contact with students.
No date was set for Falvey to issue his decision.



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