Former School District #59 teacher suspended for aggressive behavior, racist remarks
A former teacher in the Peace River South district has had his certificate of qualification suspended for behaving aggressively towards students and making racist comments toward his coworkers.
The decision involving Brent Daniel was handed down by the B.C. Commissioner for Teacher Regulation. Daniel entered into a consent agreement with the commissioner, admitting to a series of acts of professional misconduct which began in 2021.
At the time, Daniel was a secondary school teacher in School District #59. In April of 2021, he had an altercation with a Grade 8 student during a P.E. class. The student, referred to as "Student A" in the agreement, threw a soft ball at Daniel, which hit him in the head. Daniel responded by chasing the student.
"Daniel then physically grabbed the hood of Student A’s sweatshirt with his hand from behind Student A, causing Student A to fall to the ground," the document says, adding that Daniel yelled at the student and accused them of exaggerating their injury.
That incident resulted in a 10-day suspension and a transfer to another school in the district.
The following year, when Daniel was on a leave of absence from his job with the district, he applied to teach at an independent school run by a First Nation. The commissioner found that he was "dishonest" on his application because he failed to include any information about his employment with the district on his resume.
Once he got the job at the school, the agreement says, there were four separate instances of his making racist comments toward his Black colleagues in the span of a month.
"When a colleague, who was wearing a medical face mask, walked by Daniel in the hallway, Daniel said words to the effect of “I’d better put away my valuables” and when this colleague asked Daniel why, Daniel replied 'a black man wearing a mask,'" was one instance described in the agreement.
"Daniel, who was holding a bottle of vitamins, gestured towards a colleague and said words to the effect of, 'Here, you’ll need these when your HIV gets unbearable,'" was another.
In November of 2022, the school disciplined Daniel by issuing him a written reprimand and putting him on probation for three months.
That same month, the school reported several incidents in which Daniel "acted inappropriately" toward students at the K – 12 school. Those included shouting and screaming at kids in a manner described as aggressive by another teacher, swearing and slamming doors, and one case where kids feared they would be hurt by his actions.
"When some students were hiding from Daniel under some stacked chairs, Daniel yelled at the students to get out and kicked the chairs very hard. The students were afraid the chairs would fall on them," the consent agreement says.
Daniel was fired for cause on Nov. 30, 2022.
In addition to a four-week suspension of Daniel's teaching certificate, he is required to complete a course on "Creating a Positive Learning Environment." Failure to do so, the agreement notes, could lead to another suspension of his credentials.
With files from CTV Vancouver’s Lisa Steacy.