Teacher on leave after showing young students saucy YouTube clip
Published Wednesday, April 8, 2015 4:55PM PDT
Last Updated Wednesday, April 8, 2015 7:27PM PDT
A B.C. elementary school teacher has been put on paid leave after showing his students a YouTube video featuring a naked woman lying face-down on a beach.
Joe Winkler, who was suspended for a similar incident two years ago, has admitted showing the clip to his Grade 4-5 class at Keating Elementary School in Saanich as part of a unit on French music.
In an email to parents obtained by CTV News, Winkler apologized and insisted he simply clicked on the wrong YouTube video by accident.
“It was not intentional and I very much regret if I have offended any parents or students,” Winkler wrote. “I will be making a point of no longer using YouTube with this group of children, so that this type of mistake doesn’t happen again.”
The clip is a music video for French artist Mireille Mathieu, which contains several still images of women on beaches that start out harmless and get increasingly racy as the song goes on.
At the end, an unclothed woman is seen posing provocatively on the sand, though no explicit nudity is shown.
Winkler, who couldn't be reached for comment Wednesday, told parents the students started giggling at the sight of her, and he offered an explanation that in France women sometimes sunbathe topless.
“At the time, I was so shocked that there was a shot of the side of her breast that I didn’t realize that she was not wearing any bottoms, either,” he wrote in his email.
At least one student complained and Winkler was placed on leave while the Saanich School District investigates what happened.
The incident has rankled some parents who already had concerns about Winkler based on his suspension in December 2012 for showing Grade 4 students a drag queen Christmas video.
“We found out at the beginning of the year that he was going to be a teacher of our daughter’s, and I just had a hard time with it,” Larry Friedlander said.
“I don’t think he should be teaching kids of that age.”
The previous video, which was shown to students at a different Saanich elementary school, featured drag queens in bikinis and a man in a Speedo lip-synching to Bette Midler’s “Mele Kalikimaka” on a beach.
The video is lighthearted in tone and some parents told CTV News at the time that they weren’t offended, though others felt it was too sexually charged. Winkler was suspended for five days.
With a report from CTV Vancouver’s Bhinder Sajan