Complaint From a Parent
A member calls her local unit after being informed by telephone that the Ontario College of Teachers (OCT) is going to investigate a complaint from a parent about her treatment of a student. The teacher wants to know what she should do.
The member is advised to contact OECTA’s Counselling and Member Services department immediately. She should not discuss the situation with the parent who filed the complaint. As soon as she receives the written notice from the College of Teachers, she should forward a copy to the OECTA Provincial Office through her local unit office. The OECTA counsellor will review the documents and either assist the member directly or ask legal counsel to help.
The Ontario College of Teachers usually notifies members about complaints by telephone before mailing the written notice. Members should not discuss the matter with OCT representatives or respond to any written notification until they have received all relevant documents and advice from OECTA. Members should take all complaints seriously, because the College of Teachers has the power to revoke and suspend a teacher’s certificate, as outlined in Section 7 of the Professional Misconduct Regulation of the Ontario College of Teachers’ Act, December 1997. Under the regulation, OCT is obligated to investigate all written complaints. A member’s failure to respond to inquiries and requests for documentation is illegal and in itself could lead to discipline.
If you receive notice that the College of Teachers is investigating you, contact OECTA’s Counselling and Member Services department immediately. Resist the temptation to discuss this matter with anyone, including colleagues, the complainant, or your principal.