Teacher Follows Through on Ancient Threat to Wash a Student's Mouth Out

School district imposes a 10-day suspension on science teacher
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 21, 2020 4:55 PM CST
Teacher Suspended After Washing Student's Mouth Out With Sanitizer
A pump bottle of hand sanitizer.   (AP Photo/LM Otero)

It's a threat many students have heard but not seen carried out. A Florida middle school teacher has been suspended for putting hand sanitizer in the mouth of a student who she said was talking too loudly in her science class last fall. After telling the student he needed to have his mouth washed out with soap, Guyette Duhart picked up a bottle of hand sanitizer on her desk, the Palm Beach Post reports. The teacher conceded to administrators that she held the sanitizer near the student's mouth but denied pumping the bottle. She said the student pumped the sanitizer into his mouth, but a half-dozen students contradicted her. The boy spat on the floor, then left the classroom, an investigation found. When he returned, Duhart let him go rinse his mouth out.

Duhart has been suspended by the school district for 10 days without pay, a decision she's appealing. In the meantime, per the Post, she's been placed on alternative assignment. It was the first time in Duhart's 12 years working in the district that she's been disciplined. The sanitzer in her classroom was mostly ethyl alcohol. Swallowing more than a couple of mouthfuls can cause alcohol poisoning, per the CDC. (More hand sanitizer stories.)

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