CHARLOTTE, N.C. — In a 9 Investigation, Channel 9 confirmed a teacher, whose teaching certificate was recently suspended in South Carolina, is currently teaching in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School District.
The teaching license for James Vlaardingerbroek, who taught fourth grade last year at Indian Land Elementary school, was suspended on June 13, 2017, in South Carolina for what the state board calls "continued inappropriate physical contact with students."
"I believe if a lot of these parents around here knew what was going on, they'd protest about it," said Dwight Kidd, who lives down the street from the CMS school Vlaardingerbroek now teaches at.
Documents on the South Carolina Board of Education website, obtained by Channel, show in 2015, the Lancaster County School district warned Vlaardingerbroek for inappropriate contact after he allegedly allowed students to sit on his lap during class and took pictures of them. Then on September 29, 2016, he was placed on administrative leave after allegations of flipping up the skirt of a female student. He claimed he was checking to make sure she had her swimsuit on.
Vlaardingerbroek resigned from the Lancaster County school district on October 7, 2016. Just 11 days later, he was hired at CMS to teach at Albemarle Road Elementary School. That means Vlaardingerbroek was hired in North Carolina while under investigation and before his license was suspended in South Carolina.
“Wherever you are, whether it be one state or another, it's still the same person, still the same reputation,” said Leora Velez, who has two kids in CMS.
Eyewitness News anchor Liz Foster asked CMS officials whether potential employees are required to disclose any previous investigations involving themselves at other school districts during the hiring process. A spokesperson replied, "We are checking on this."
Foster went to Vlaardingerbroek's home to ask whether he disclosed that information. Nobody answered the door.
It's important to note Vlaardingerbroek has never been convicted of a crime in North or South Carolina. He is not facing charges for alleged inappropriate conduct in South Carolina.
A spokesperson with North Carolina's Board of Education told Channel 9 just because his teaching license is suspended in South Carolina, it doesn't necessarily mean it would be in North Carolina; but he would be required to go before an ethics commission to explain why.
Vlaardingerbroek’s North Carolina teaching license is still current. However, as of this 9 Investigation, a state spokesperson confirms that state licensing staff will be following up.
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