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Teacher Who Admitted Hanging Students Upside Down Suspended For 3 Months

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A Toronto elementary school teacher who admitted to mistreating his students had his punishment handed down on Monday – a three month suspension of his teaching license and mandatory enrollment anger management and “effective student discipline” courses.

Thomas Adrian Foster, who worked at two Toronto-area schools between September 2003 and August 2006, had already been suspended twice without pay in 2004 and 2006 for misconduct. The school board ultimately fired him in August 2006.

Foster, a history teacher, admitted to “physically mistreating” his grade 6 and 7 students by dragging them into the hallway and hanging them upside down by their feet, calling them names, regaling them with stories of staff members losing their virginity, telling students they would “fail their asses off in university”, and smashing a miniature pool table in the classroom.

The incidents were outlined in an agreed statement of facts that Foster did not contest. He told the Ontario College of Teachers disciplinary committee that was holding his punishment hearing:

I’ve moved on from this part of my life. I’m not proposing to return to work in the classroom.

Far from an apology, he went on to add, according to the Toronto Star, that he “feels removed from the misconduct incidents”.

I feel it’s unnecessarily destructive to dredge this up nearly 10 years after the fact. I feel that I was, in other respects, good at what I did.

He also said that since he stopped teaching in August 2006, he’s been working on his anger issues and saw a therapist once a week for three years.

As for his plans now?

He told reporters that he’s interested in pursuing “academia”, and that he feels better suited for a more “intellectual pursuit”.

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