Concord High School teacher to be fired after ‘inappropriate comments’

Published: May. 6, 2021 at 9:48 AM EDT
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ELKHART COUNTY, Ind. (WNDU) - A Concord High School teacher is being fired after making “inappropriate comments of a sexual nature,” the school system announced Thursday.

One day after Concord Community School administrators learned of inappropriate sexual comments allegedly made by Concord High School teacher, Andrew Cowells, the district is now showing Cowells the front door, placing him on administrative leave, and terminating him from his position.

Priscilla Espinal, who’s daughter is a freshman at Concord High School, outraged by the news.

“I mean I kind of just pissed off because they are saying it was inappropriate comments but I mean, what I’m hearing from my daughter and from her classmates is that this guy was doing, was seen doing a whole bunch of other things,” Espinal says.

The details regarding those comments or who they directed to are unclear as the Concord Community Schools Police Department investigate. However, Espinal says she is in shock with what she’s heard so far.

“I am worrying about COVID and now I have to worry about these teachers violating my kids?!,” Espinal says.

According to school officials, Cowells is no longer allowed to return to any school premises or contacting any students, parents, or staff members moving forward.

Though, Espinal says his firing is not enough.

“He needs to be put in jail. He needs to be a registered sex offender. He shouldn’t be able to work in another school, not in Indiana, not anywhere. He shouldn’t be around children at all. So for me to hear he just got fired I think is ridiculous.”

The Elkhart County Prosecutor Office says they have received phone calls about the allegations against Cowells.

County Prosecutor Vicky Becker says as soon as Concord Community Schools Police Department conclude its investigation, the case will then be passed to the prosecutor’s office for review.

From Concord Community Schools:

On Wednesday, May 5, Concord Community Schools administrators learned of inappropriate comments of a sexual nature made by one of its high school teachers. Concord Community Schools immediately reported the allegations to Concord Community Schools Police Department officers and the Department of Child Services. Additionally, school administrators began their own investigation.

Concord Community Schools placed the teacher, Andrew Cowells, on leave and has commenced the employment termination process. Cowells is prohibited from returning to any school premises or contacting any students, parents, or staff members.

Rest assured that any conduct that places our students at risk in any manner will be dealt with directly and severely. We are entrusted everyday with the safety and wellbeing of our community’s youth; we will not shirk that responsibility.

This matter remains under investigation by school and other officials. Various state and federal privacy laws prohibit disclosure of certain information. To avoid interfering with and possibly jeopardizing those investigations, Concord Community Schools will not be commenting further at this time.

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