The New Zealand Teachers Disciplinary Tribunal has decided not to deregister a teacher after her second drink drive conviction in four years.  The second conviction came about after the teacher drove into the back of a parked car.

In deciding not to deregister the teacher, the Tribunal was mindful of the fact that the teacher’s driving had caused damage to another person’s vehicle.  Of significance was that the teacher admitted she had a problem with alcohol dependency and was undergoing treatment for this.  Also in the teacher’s favour was that she had kept her Principal informed, attended a safe driving programme and was engaged in counselling.  The teacher had also remained sober for two years since the accident.

Given her insight into her alcohol dependency and the specialist assistance to supporting keeping her safe, the Tribunal considered that a rehabilitative approach was able to be followed.  The teacher was censured and had conditions placed on her Practicing Certificate for two years.  That includes informing current and future employers of the conviction and the Tribunal findings.  In addition she must provide four reports as she undergoes her alcohol support programmes.

Alan Knowsley

Education Lawyer