Mentor teacher arrested for child abuse - how badly does this hurt my job search and what to do now?

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by LearnerForLife, May 15, 2023.

  1. LearnerForLife

    LearnerForLife New Member

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    May 15, 2023

    My mentor teacher from student teaching (completed two years ago) was arrested last night for felony child abuse. This leaves me in an awkward position regarding my resume and portfolio. His letter of recommendation was the best one in my portfolio and he was the person who could best attest to my performance teaching in a classroom (I've been in a support staff position for the past two years). Obviously I can't rely on him as a reference now, but I'm also torn on whether to drop his letter of recommendation from my portfolio. It would be awkward to shine a spotlight on him by including his recommendation, but on the other hand, I can't exactly drop my student teaching from my resume altogether, and anyone looking into it would probably find out. On top of that, the absence of a letter of recommendation from a mentor teacher is probably a red flag of its own.

    I would appreciate some honest advice on how badly this is going to affect my job search going forward, and whether keeping or dropping that letter of recommendation will hurt me more. Is there any way I can mitigate the fallout from this situation?
     
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  3. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    May 15, 2023

    Oh, that is AWFUL!
    You shouldn't suffer because of someone else's misdeeds. Can you talk with your mentor's supervisor? Show that person your letter and ask if they can help you take it up a level.
     
  4. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    May 16, 2023

    As far as your job search, if the mentor's name comes up, questioning, if truthful, simply state that you never saw actions that could have prepared you for what has come down on him this way. That is not a head in the sand attitude, but may be extremely truthful - most abusers of many sorts shock those who felt they knew the outed abusers well, and they never saw what was coming. It is our nature to trust, but as a word of caution to all, we can never be too vigilant about the actions of those in a position of power over children. If it feels wrong to you, it probably is wrong.
     
  5. viola_x_wittrockiana

    viola_x_wittrockiana Cohort

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    May 16, 2023

    Wow, that's unfortunate. It depends on where you're applying in relation to where the internship was, plus how high-profile the case is, plus how common of a name the perp has. If you're 4+ hours away and the person has a generic enough name (Joe Green, Michael Browning, George Smythe), then you might be ok to leave in the name, maybe the letter too. If you're too close, do what you can to distance yourself.

    I would contact your university supervisor, the next supervisor of the perp, and that district's HR and ask if you can substitute one of their names or get a letter from one of them. Particularly if HR says yes, that seems like the best option. If HR agrees, there's not a lot of ways that could backfire.
     

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