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

Students at Norton Elementary School wait in line as they're served dinner for the first time at school. Norton Elementary now serves breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner; Norton Elementary Serves It All

In addition to breakfast and lunch, Norton Elementary School now serves dinner to students enrolled in its after-school program. Dinner is currently scheduled to be served at 2 p.m.


Yes For Marion County Schools table at the Journey Into Reading event at Central Florida State College. The theme of the event was "seasons" and we were designated as "winter."

Amendment 4 Could Bring Back Marion County Teachers And School Programs

On Election Day, Marion County voters will vote on Amendment 4, which calls for the millage rate to increase. The extra money will go toward school programs and teacher salaries, potentially bringing back laid-off, first-year teachers.


Screen Shot 2014-11-03 at 1.22.22 PM

New FCAT Replacement Test To Be Computer-Based

The new test set to replace the FCAT this March will be computer-based. Some educators are worried the test may be a disadvantage for students who are not used to working on a computer on a daily basis.


Dunnellon Elementary School's Maria Gonzalez helps her fourth grade students with classwork. She received the Excellence in Education Award earlier this month from Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera as part of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Local Hispanic Teachers Receive Excellence In Education Award

Maria Gonzalez of Dunnellon Elementary School and Grisell Santiago of P.K. Yonge Developmental Research School received the Excellence in Education Award earlier this month. The annual award was sponsored by Volunteer Florida, the Florida Department of Education and the Executive Office of the Governor as a part of Hispanic Heritage Month.


Students from Idylwild Elementary School launch a water rocket at Flavet Field. Fourth and fifth grade students from Idylwild Elementary School visited the University of Florida on Oct. 30 to learn about engineering and other STEM-related studies.

The University of Florida College of Engineering Reaches Out to Elementary Students

University of Florida engineering students hosted a day of science activities on campus for fourth- and fifth-grade students from Idylwild Elementary School on October 30.


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
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments