Friday, March 3, 2017

Damning report slams Chris Spence for ‘egregious breach of trust’

Chris Spence was “deceptive and manipulative” when he deliberately engaged in “repeated and extensive plagiarism” that violated public trust and tarnished the reputation of the education profession, the Ontario College of Teachers has found.

The former education director of the Toronto District School Board was stripped of his teaching licence in December after a college discipline committee found him guilty of professional misconduct.

This week, the reasons for that decision — the harshest penalty available to the college and a first for a plagiarism case — were made public in a 50-page report posted on the College of Teachers website.

Spence, who last month gave notice he plans to fight the college’s ruling, will file an appeal with Ontario’s divisional court in the next few weeks, his lawyer, Christopher Edwards said in a statement emailed to the Star on Thursday.

The discipline committee’s damning report cites a “repeated pattern of dishonesty” by the once highly regarded educator and “clear and convincing evidence” of plagiarism in 14 excerpts from newspaper articles, including four published in the Star, blog postings, books and a speech written between 2002 and 2013.

“The member’s acts of plagiarism over an approximately 11-year period were not mistakes; they were deliberate attempts to receive credit for the work of others, and served to bolster his reputation through writing he did not entirely author,” the three-member committee wrote in its decision, dated Feb. 23.  (more...)


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