FILED IN: Education

Teacher posts duct taped students picture, now assigned arbitrator

Melissa Cairns Facebook profile photo. Teacher under fire after posting picture of students with duct tape across their mouths.

An Akron, Ohio teacher is in hot water after she allegedly posted a picture on her personal Facebook wall, showing some of her middle school students with duct tape over their mouths back in Oct. 2012. The teacher has been on paid leave since Oct. 19.

Melissa Cairns, a math teacher at the new Buchtel Community Learning Center (formally Buchtel High School), was hired in August for the school which services students in grade levels seven through 12.

According to the Akron Beacon Journal, Cairns personnel file indicated that Cairns was placed on a sort of probation at a prior middle school before the alleged Facebook photo incident. Cairns former school requested Cairns to take professional steps to improve her teaching skills.

Cairns posted the alleged picture of her student’s mouths duct taped, with a caption which read, “Finally found a way to get them to be quiet!!!”.

The photo has since been taken down after several parents and school officials demanded the photo be removed.

On Jan. 14, the Akron Public School board voted to move forward with Cairn’s termination, however, the teacher’s union asked that Cairns be given an arbitrator to negotiate on her behalf. The board is expected to make it’s final determination on Jan. 28.