Ex-principal loses appeal over changing grades
A former Saskatchewan principal whose teaching licence was suspended after she was found guilty of changing her daughter’s grades has lost her appeal.
Kimberley Sautner, who was the principal of Wolseley High School from 2006 to 2014, had argued there was insufficient evidence for the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation to find her guilty of professional misconduct and said a six-month suspension of her licence was “excessive.”
Judges in Saskatoon Court of Queen’s Bench disagreed and dismissed her appeal this month.
Sautner was found guilty of professional misconduct for changing her daughter’s grades in June 2014.
According to court documents, Sautner’s daughter graduated from Wolseley High School in June 2014 and went on to attend classes at the University of Lethbridge. Sautner’s daughter struggled in her university English class and was told that if she’d done better in her high school English class she would not have to take the course.
Sautner, who by then was working as a principal in an Alberta school, contacted teachers at Wolseley High School and asked them to help her daughter upgrade her marks.
“I want you to know that I plan to pay you $500 for doing this (that’s between you and I) because I know it’s more work than having someone sit in your class,” Sautner wrote in a text message to one teacher.
The request prompted an investigation of Sautner’s daughter’s grades. An IT supervisor determined that Sautner’s daughter’s English and theatre arts grades had been changed in an electronic program between June 25 and June 26, 2014, and only Sautner and an administrative assistant had logged into the program during that time period.
A Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation committee found Sautner guilty of professional misconduct for changing her daughter’s grades but said there was insufficient evidence to charge her with making inappropriate requests to teachers.
Sautner’s lawyer said this spring that Sautner was no longer teaching and had no plans to return to the profession, but still wanted to clear her name and have her licence suspension overturned.