Illinois Kindergarten Teacher Suspended for Letting Minors Consume Alcohol

An elementary school teacher in Illinois has been placed on administrative leave after allegedly allowing minors to consume alcohol at her home.

Wendy Bunnell, 39, faces two counts of allowing minors to drink alcohol at her residence, which carries a possible $1,000 fine.  Bunnell teaches at a local elementary school, while all of the students involved attend a separate high school.

According to the report, Bunnell allowed her 14-year-old to throw a party where as many as a dozen of his friends attended.  The police were informed that although Bunnell did not provide alcohol for the minors, she knew that they brought it to her house with the intention of consuming it.

As is commonplace these days, police learned of the alleged incident after the teens began talking about the party on Facebook and Twitter.  A concerned citizen reported the posts to a local detective, who brought the matter to the authorities.

Police brought some of the teens in for questioning, where a few of them exchanged testimony for immunity.

According to another report, Bunnell might have bigger issues to worry about.  A parent one of the teens alleges that her son has been suspended from sporting activities at the high school because it was a second violation of the Student-Athlete Honor Code.  The mother said she believed her child when he said that he hadn’t been drinking, and she feels her son is being targeted by the school because he allegedly engaged in a sex act with the kindergarten teacher.  The student in question is 17 years old, meaning that he is viewed as an adult under Illinois State Law, but the most recent allegations may make it more difficult for Bunnell to keep her job.

Bunnell is due in court on April 4.

Brett Appelman comments

This woman is being charged with a misdemeanor, so it is highly unlikely that she will go to jail for the charge of providing alcohol to minors.

However, many jobs, particularly jobs that involve working with children, have a contract with a “Morals Clause.”  These contracts can state that any action that makes the school “look bad” or puts the school in a “Bad Light” can be cause for suspension or termination.  This teacher may very well end up being fired for this incident.

Much more troubling is the allegation that she had sexual contact with one of the high school students.  It is currently merely an allegation, and she is presumed innocent of any illegal actions, but if she is ever charged criminally with sexual contact with a minor she will find it very difficult to secure a teaching position in the future.  An allegation of this nature will certainly make any potential school board very wary about hiring her.

Again, we stress that these are merely allegations, and she has not been charged with any sexual crimes, and that she is presumed innocent of any criminal actions.

Related source:  DailyMail.co.uk, WJBDRadio.com

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