A teacher has been banned from the classroom after having a sexual relationship with a Year 13 student, only discovered when the girl's mum checked her phone bill.
The New Zealand Teachers' Disciplinary Tribunal has kicked the disgraced teacher out of the profession saying he failed to maintain professional boundaries and abused his position of power and responsibility.
The teacher, who can't be identified after extensive suppression details were imposed by the committee, remains in an intermittent relationship with the teenager, a liaison regarded as reprehensible by the disciplinary body.
The committee heard the teacher, who previously taught at a secondary school in the lower North Island, was in a sexual relationship with the student, sent hundreds of text messages to the student late at night and in the early hours of the morning and counselled the student without expert qualification.
In August 2015 the girl's mother discovered phone charges for 472 text messages and four phone calls between the pair on a bill. When confronted her daughter admitted the pair were having an affair.
The next day the teacher resigned and never returned to the school.
The teacher admitted to the committee the affair had taken place, that it was serious misconduct and appropriate his registration was cancelled.
The committee heard the relationship had adversely effected the student affecting both her learning and wellbeing.
Calling the behaviour of the teacher reprehensible, the committee said he took advantage of a vulnerable student ultimately causing harm. It also considered his ongoing relationship with the student an aggravating feature.
It found it was a clear case of serious misconduct and cancelling his registration was the appropriate penalty for the abuse of power.
However due to his dire financial situation with the Official Assignee instigating the No Asset Procedure, the committee made no order for costs as there would be no means to enforce payment.