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Teacher makes student wear 'cone of shame'

May 10, 2012 at 4:37 PM

ZEPHYRHILLS, Fla., May 10 (UPI) -- A Florida high school teacher is facing dismissal after allegedly disciplining students by making them wear a coned dog collar.

Zephyrhills High physical science teacher Laurie Bailey-Cutkomp, 47, allegedly made eight students wear the collar -- one used to prevent animals from licking themselves after surgery -- on two days in April, the Tampa Bay (Fla.) Times reported.

Pasco County schools superintendent Heather Fiorentino has recommended firing Bailey-Cutkomp over the incident.

"I am stunned that you would put dog collars on students for any reason," Fiorentino said in a letter to Bailey-Cutkomp. "I am very concerned that you used this collar to punish and embarrass students in front of their peers."

Bailey-Cutkomp stopped using the cone when she saw that a parent of one of her students commented on Facebook that it was "inappropriate" to make students wear it. Bailey-Cutkomp later told investigators it was "probably" a bad idea to put the collar on students, Fiorentino said.

Some of Bailey-Cutkomp's peers have shown support for her, although admitting it was a mistake for her to put the cone on students.

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