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Mequon students upset after teacher put on leave after hazing allegations

Posted: 5:24 PM, Nov 15, 2017
Updated: 2017-11-16 17:47:15Z

MEQUON -- Some Homestead High School students are crying foul after their theater teacher was yanked out of the school.

Students said it's over hazing accusations, she had no control of.

School officials would only say an unnamed teacher is on leave as they investigate the situation.

Students told  TODAY'S TMJ4 it is over a so-called tradition involving a metal platter. It has a swear word written on it we cannot say on television.

"The top scenes of the show, the ones that get the biggest applause, go head-to-head every night and the winner gets to slap the runner up with the platter," said Slima Berrada, Homestead High School Senior.

"If this is the situation then why aren't we talking about removing the platter tradition than removing a teacher from a building," said Traci Cain, Parent.

School officials sent us this statement:

"The Mequon-Thiensville School District is currently investigating a situation that was reported to us involving a staff member at Homestead High School. No one has been dismissed.

District teachers, as employees who are under contract with a public employer, are entitled to certain constitutional protections including due process, or the right to be heard, and we are currently engaging in this process. We are working through this matter – under the process established by state law – with the teacher and her legal and union representatives. Like all public employees, District teachers also have the right to privacy in employment matters."

Students claim their spring play is in jeopardy. They are less than a week out from their one-act state competition.

The school sent another statement later Wednesday evening. 

When a concerning situation at Homestead High School was reported to administrators in the Mequon-Thiensville School District, officials began an investigation. There is a distinct process set forth by District policy and state law to investigate concerns. In keeping with this process, the District placed a staff member on leave during the course of the investigation.

The District has resolved the current personnel matter and has further addressed the pattern of concerning behaviors that led to the investigation. We hold all teachers and District personnel to the highest standards of professional and ethical conduct. We are confident that this newest concern was limited to a very specific group of students and that steps are being taken to ensure the practice has been eradicated.

The staff member who was placed on leave will return to her full range of professional duties, both as a teacher and in her role as theatre director, on Thursday, November 16.

TODAY'S TMJ4 spoke to the teacher who we are not naming, over the phone. She said a meeting was scheduled for Wednesday afternoon. We are waiting to find out the outcome.