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Teacher banned for life in BC after relationship with student

A former Vancouver Island secondary school teacher has been banned from teaching in British Columbia for life after a recent ruling by the BC Commissioner for Teacher Regulation (BCCTR).

On Aug. 26, 2022, a complaint was filed to the BCCTR about Ian Alexander Stephen McKenzie, with an investigation immediately being ordered into the former teacher's multi-year relationship with a student.

The gender and name of the student have not been revealed to protect their identity.

<who> Photo Credit: Getty Images

McKenzie taught social studies and physical education in the Sooke School District from 2007-22, when he “gave an undertaking not to teach in the kindergarten to Grade 12 education system in any role or position requiring authorization under the Teachers Act,” according to a consent resolution agreement.

During the 2007-08 school year, McKenzie had a 15-year-old student in his PE 10. He was reportedly aware that the Grade 10 student was vulnerable and felt unsupported as they began to confide in Mckenzie about personal matters.

The consent resolution agreement states that throughout the student’s Grade 10 year, McKenzie breached appropriate professional boundaries.

In the spring of the student’s Grade 12 year, the relationship then became more personal and intimate, which included McKenzie sending emails and texts of a personal nature to the student, making comments of sexual nature to the student, spending time with the student after school at McKenzie’s home, hugging and similar touching.

McKenzie then told the student that the relationship had to be kept a secret and they would have to wait until the student was 18 to "officially date."

Within months of the student graduating, McKenzie and the student began dating, with the relationship becoming sexual.

This past March, the the commission proposed a consent resolution agreement to McKenzie in which the former teacher admits that the facts set out in the agreement are true and that they constitute professional misconduct.

McKenzie has had his certificate of qualification cancelled and he is never allowed to apply for another one.

When making the decision of the consequences, the commission listed these points as the considered factors.

  • “McKenzie was aware that the student was vulnerable and felt unsupported when they started to communicate about the student’s personal matters.”
  • “The relationship grew out of the teacher-student relationship, in which McKenzie had a position of power and trust.”
  • “McKenzie allowed the teacher-student relationship to become exploitative of the student for his own personal and sexual advantage.”

The consent resolution agreement was signed by McKenzie on Aug. 30, 2023 and by the commissioner on Sept. 6, 2023.

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