“Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” – Randall Terry, American Celebrity
After she was given a slap on the wrist by the EPC over three years ago, Mrs. Kirchner proceeded to step her egregious actions up a notch six months later after she was initially sanctioned.
Ms. Kirchner was a language arts teacher and union steward at Coral Reef Senior High School, Miami-Dade County Public Schools. Ms. Kirchner in 2008 was appointed by the Miami-Dade School Board to the Lesson Plan Development Task Group. Kirchner was elected Vice President At-Large and sat on the Executive Board of the United Teachers of Dade (UTD).
So what’s so special about Christine Jane Kirchner?
According to the April 4, 2014 FLDOE Education Practices Commission of the State of Florida report:
- During the 2012-2013 school year, Respondent [Kirchner] discussed inappropriate topics, such as sex, virginity and masturbation, with her language arts class. The conversations made several students feel uncomfortable or embarrassed.
- During the 2012-2013 school year, during a lesson with her language arts class, Respondent [Kirchner] simulated having an orgasm. The simulation made several students feel uncomfortable or embarrassed.
- During the 2012-2013 school year, Respondent [Kirchner] gave massages to students of her language arts class. The massages made several students feel uncomfortable or embarrassed.
Kirchner was found guilty of “gross immorality or an act involving moral turpitude” and that she violated “the Principles of Professional Conduct for the Education Profession.” Kirchner was found to have violated Florida State Statute 1012.795, paragraphs (1)(d) and (1)(j), respectively.
What was the punishment given Kirchner?
The Florida Department of Education accepted a “Settlement Agreement”. The settlement agreement consisted of a letter of reprimand and placing Kirchner on two years probation. Kirchner accepted the Settlement Agreement.
Kirchner returned to her classroom at Coral Reef High School and retained her position on the Executive Board of the UTD. She retired last June and did not seek reelection to the UTD Executive Board.
However, six months after she was initially sanctioned by the EPC, she engaged in other acts that seem to be more outrageous according to a finalized EPC report issued last month.
According to the October 27, 2017, EPC Report:
- On November 7, 2013, the Commissioner of Education issued an Administrative Complaint seeking to sanction the Respondent’s Florida Educator’s Certificate after she discussed topics such as sex, virginity and masturbation, simulated an orgasm in class and gave several massages to students in her class.
- On April 4, 2014, the Educational Practices Commission issued a Final Order incorporating the parties Settlement Agreement which included a two (2) year probation period with specific conditions.
- During the 2014-2015 school year, Respondent made several racially and sexually inappropriate comments to her students on school grounds and during school These comments include, but are not limited to, the following:
(a) In or around November 2014, Respondent called – a student in her classroom, an “asshole” and ‘jackass” or words to that effect;
(b) In or around November 2014, Respondent referred to —————- work, as “shit” or words to that effect;
(c) In or around November 2014, Respondent called – a student in her classroom, a “jackass” or words to that effect;
(d) In or around November 2014, Respondent told an African-American student in her class, to not steal from her classroom because he would be blamed for said theft on the basis of his race;
(e) In or around November 2014, Respondent inappropriately discussed the similarities and differences between the female nipple and clitoris with a female student in her class; and
(f) In or around November 2014, Respondent referred to students as “retarded” or “retards” or words to that effect.
- That, as a result of Respondent’s actions described herein, Respondent violated one or more of the conditions of her probation.
What was the punishment for these new offenses?
For the second time, The Florida Department of Education accepted a “Settlement Agreement.” This recent settlement agreement consists of a letter of reprimand and placing Kirchner on a six month suspension, three years probation, taking an ethics course, and a $750 fine. Kirchner accepted the Settlement Agreement.
Though she retired from Miami-Dade County Public schools last month, at the completion of her six month suspension, she will be eligible to teach anywhere in the State of Florida.
Should she be allowed to?
We report, you decide.