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'Sexist,' 'racist' comments get dean suspended

Arlington Middle School dean suspended without pay over inappropriate comments

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – An Arlington Middle School administrator was suspended without pay earlier this month for comments that the school district called sexist and racist.

John Bouchard, the dean of students at Arlington Middle, made those inappropriate comments to both students and staff, according to school investigators.

A Duval County Public Schools investigation, which began in October, found that Bouchard made the statements on several occasions. He’s now waiting out a 15-day suspension. (NOTE: Some of the comments listed below may be considered offensive.)

According to the report, Bouchard's comments to female staff members included:

  • “Black women in power can be difficult to deal with and act like [expletives] sometimes.”
  • “Here she comes with that ugly Jewish face.”
  • “You look like you got some last night.”

Bouchard also reportedly told students “You look like Frankenstein” and “You must have gotten that hair done in the hood.”

News4Jax crime and safety analyst Gil Smith, a former school resource officer, said the comments are particularly inappropriate in a learning environment.

“To make those kind of comments is completely inappropriate and I think they did the right thing by suspending him, just to see what they're going to do further,” Smith said.

The school board voted Dec. 7 to suspend Bouchard for 15 days.

It’s not the first time he's been disciplined by the district.

The report showed Bouchard received a verbal reprimand in February for being unprofessional toward colleagues.

Smith said this type of violation will require a major change for Bouchard.

“Try to work on his behavior, do some type of progressive discipline, and maybe some retraining. That's always a possibility,” Smith said.

News4Jax stopped by a home believed to be Bouchard’s on Monday for comment, but no one was home.

In addition to the suspension, the district warned Bouchard to refrain from such behavior in the future.