In Wake of Scandal, NEA Board Member Resigns
A Vermont teacher recently elected to the National Education Association's executive committee has resigned after a state suspension he served for having sex in his classroom with a teacher's assistant was made public.
Wayne Nadeau, a social studies teacher at Lamoille Union High School in Hyde Park, Vt., was elected to serve a paid, three-year term on the executive committee during the NEA's annual meeting in New Orleans on July 4. Officials at both the NEA and its Vermont chapter were not aware of the suspension.
According to a report by the Vermont education department, Mr. Nadeau had consensual sex with a colleague in his classroom during the 2001-02 school year. While the classroom door was closed, the pair had sex when students were or might have been at school, the report said. Mr. Nadeau's teaching license was suspended in February for 20 days.
Mr. Nadeau, who has taught at the 600-student school for approximately 20 years, could not be reached for comment.
Oklahoma Presses Issue
Local and national union leaders initially said in news reports that the suspension would not affect Mr. Nadeau's NEA position. But concern began to mount nationally with the Oklahoma Education Association's call for the Vermont teacher to resign.
"The Oklahoma Education Association and its members are devoted to high standards, teacher quality, and building respect for our profession," OEA President Roy Bishop said in a July 23 news release. "We don't believe Wayne Nadeau meets those standards."
The next day, NEA President Reg Weaver said in a statement that Mr. Nadeau had resigned. He said Mr. Nadeau realized the growing "controversy" would make it "impossible for him to function effectively as a member of the executive committee."
Meanwhile, Mr. Nadeau is still employed by the Lamoille North Supervisory Union, a 2,000-student school district. But school board members are weighing his future as a teacher, Superintendent Robert McNamara said last week.
Vol. 22, Issue 43, Page 3Published in Print: August 6, 2003, as In Wake of Scandal, NEA Board Member Resigns