Skip to content

Area high school teacher suspended for professional misconduct

Michael Corradetti ordered to complete cultural sensitivity training following 'inappropriate' comments
Ontario College of Teachers.

A Barrie high school teacher has been suspended for seven months after being found guilty of professional misconduct by a disciplinary committee at the Ontario College of Teachers (OCT).

Michael Corradetti, a teacher with the Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board (SMCDSB), was accused of making comments to a student “that he knew or ought to have known were inappropriate and/or unwelcome,” according to the notice of hearing report on the college’s website.

Those comments included asking a male student, “What do you want to be? A terrorist?" as well as “asking a female student in front of the class if she was up late watching Asian porn on her phone,” telling the class he “would not acknowledge the pronoun ‘ze’ or any pronoun other than he/she,” “stating that people who were gender-neutral were stupid and he did not understand them,” and, on one or more occasions, “telling the class there were only two genders and he would not acknowledge that there were other genders or gender identifiers.”

The college noted these particular allegations occurred sometime in or around the 2019-20 academic year.

The school at which he taught, as well as subjects and grade levels, were redacted from the report.

“Generally speaking, where the name of the school is withheld in public documents it is typically to protect the identity of students and other victims. Identifying the name of the school could potentially disclose the identity of victims or violate a court-imposed publication ban,” explained Gabrielle Barkany, a senior communications officer with the OCT.

The hearing report also stated that in 2020-21, Corradetti made or participated in two podcast episodes in which he uttered inappropriate comments about his students at the school, including giving the nickname ‘Gerbil’ to one of his students because the student was “gerbil-sized,” giving a student the nickname “El Chapo” because “he looked like he should be in a Mexican cartel,” and nicknaming a student “whitey” because the student “was a prototypical white guy.”

The McMaster University graduate, who also studied at Canisius College in New York, was also accused of making inappropriate comments about Filipino culture and asking his students if they used the app Snapchat “for the dirty stuff or the R-rated stuff.”

Corradetti was also accused of showing a student a video in which he made “inappropriate comments” related to white privilege, how he didn’t understand the use of the “N-word” in hip-hop and rap music, but that he would be “on the hot seat” if he used it, and that “white people were OK with people saying something was cultural appropriation” but “heaven forbid if he turned around and said it to a minority group.”

As part of his suspension, which was effective as of July 13, Corradetti was banned from teaching in any publicly funded school. He was also ordered to enrol in and complete a cultural sensitivity course within 90 days.

In a statement emailed to BarrieToday, Tammy Martin, executive human resources officer with the SMCDSB, said at the end of the 2021 school year, the board was made aware of student concerns related to the professional conduct of one of its high school teachers.

“At that time, we communicated with students and families at the school and invited those with concerns to come forward,” Martin said. “We listened very carefully to what our students and parents had to say, and we responded immediately to that feedback by initiating a thorough investigation.”

That investigation included involvement from the OCT, she noted, adding the SMCDSB supported and co-operated with the college’s investigation and “fully support(s) the outcome.”

“We want to be clear that the sentiments and opinions expressed by the teacher were inappropriate and contrary to the values we work so hard to uphold as a Catholic education system. Our professional educators must be held to the highest possible standard, and it is critical that we model acceptance and inclusion in every way possible,” Martin said.

“We thank our students and families for having the courage to recognize the inappropriateness of this behaviour and for coming forward with their concerns. By working together, we can foster a community of acceptance, kindness and inclusion for all students, staff and families in our schools.”

Barkany said a full report detailing the reasons for the suspension will be posted when available, though she was unable to provide a timeline as to when that would occur.