WUFT News

Former Alachua County teacher gets deferred prosecution

By and on April 10th, 2013

Glen Nichol, Alachua County Teacher of the Year for 2012, is no longer employed by the public school board following a sworn complaint for inappropriately touching at least one of his students at Lawton Chiles Elementary School in Gainesville.

“We received a complaint from a parent at the end of April in 2012, and we immediately removed Mr. Nichol from the classroom and contacted law enforcement for them to begin an investigation,” said Jackie Johnson, spokeswoman for Alachua County Public Schools.

Nichol was moved from his job as a fifth grade teacher into an office job, away from children.

“This was a job that did not involve working with students and did not involve working in the schools; (he was) doing some technology work,” Johnson said.

Nichol agreed to the terms of a deferred prosecution agreement, in which a 24- to 36- month term is not unusual in most felony cases, said Nichol’s attorney, Gilbert A. Schaffnit.

“Once the case is dismissed, this agreement contemplates that unless there’s a violation, that Mr. Nichol would not appear in front of the court, would not have to make any admissions of guilt, would not be adjudicated guilty, and so if he successfully completes the agreement, he will not be a convicted felon and will not have an adjudication of guilt on his record,” Schaffnit said.

He said a deferred prosecution is a contract between the state attorney’s office and the accused. It states that in exchange for doing the things called for in the contract, which would include giving up his teaching license, at the end of the term, the state would file dismissal of the charges.

“The advantage for everyone is that it brings closure to the case,” Schaffnit said. “It allows everyone to go on with their life and not run the risks of engaging in litigation and the uncertainty and the expense and the emotional trauma of going through a trial.”

Johnson said the privacy of students and employees remain on the forefront of importance to the public schools.

“Under state law, we have to protect the privacy of both students and employees,” Johnson said. “And keep in mind, this was an active law enforcement investigation. They have their own process for conducting an investigation. We don’t interfere with that.”

The school board has ongoing checks on teachers to keep issues like this from falling through the cracks.

“Under Florida law, we receive notifications from law enforcement any time any employee has been arrested,” she said. “That is part of state law, but obviously in this case, we were the ones who reported it to law enforcement when we received the complaint.”


This entry was posted in Education and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Education

Waiting for author to email caption w/ names

Eastside High School Culinary Team Wins Sixth Place In National Competition

Students of Eastside High School’s Institute of Culinary Arts competed in the National Prostart Invitational in Anaheim, California, hosted by the National Restaurant Association. The team came in sixth place.


**Tenley was emailed to verify that she made this. Credit it accordingly once she responds.**

Two Years After Grant Ends, Alachua County Schools See Little Improvement

Alachua County schools received a $2 million grant five years ago. Three of the schools that benefited greatly from the money haven’t seen much improvement in their school grades.


Students at Stephen Foster Elementary School learn the basics of nutrition education from retired University of Florida dietetics professor Dr. Pam McMahon. Kids in the Kitchen is a county wide program sponsored by the Department of Children and Families, UF and the USDA. Photo courtesy of Bailey Bruce / Foster Elementary Afterschool Coordinator.

New Program Hopes To Bring Nutritional Education To Elementary Schools

Stephen Foster Elementary School is the first elementary school to participate in Kids in the Kitchen, a program that teaches students about nutritional food options and food preparation. The program was started by Pamela McMahon, Ph.D., a retired University of Florida faculty member and registered dietician.


Screen Shot

UF Students Welcome Bill Proposing Tax-Free Textbooks

A new law in Florida could help students save money on expensive textbooks. The bill looks to eliminate the sales tax from textbooks to give students a break on the hundreds they already spend on required texts.


Students at Sante Fe College have opportunities to seek baccalaureate degrees in many areas of study. Santa Fe is one of 28 state colleges in Florida, which offer a combined 175 baccalaureate degree programs.

Four-Year Degree Limitation Proposed By State Senator Sparks Debate

Senator Joe Negron proposed to limit baccalaureate programs in Florida community colleges in a recent Senate Higher Education Committee. Santa Fe provost Ed Bonahue argues that the attention should be placed on enrollment, not the programs.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments