Teacher fired over Facebook pic

IOL pic feb 8  facebook privacy AP

A US teacher was fired for posting a picture of herself holding a glass of wine and mug of beer on Facebook, a report has said.

The happy holiday snap cost Ashley Payne her job after a parent spotted it on Facebook - and complained, the Daily Mail reports.

The picture was reportedly taken while travelling around Europe in the summer of 2009.

According to the Daily Mail, Payne, 24, was shocked when she was summoned to the head teacher's office at Apalachee High School, in Winder, Georgia, and offered an ultimatum.

She reportedly told CBS News: “He just asked me, ‘Do you have a Facebook page?’

“And you know, I'm confused as to why I am being asked this, but I said, ‘Yes’, and he said, ‘Do you have any pictures of yourself up there with alcohol?’”

He then offered her an option: resign or be suspended.

She chose to resign.

School officials also took offence to the use of the B-word on the page, the report said.

Payne is now in a bitter legal battle with the school to get her job back.

Her lawyer, Richard Storrs, was quoted as saying: “It would be like I went to a restaurant and I saw my daughter's teacher sitting there with her husband having a glass of some kind of liquid.

“You know, is that frowned upon by the school board? Is that illegal? Is that improper? Of course not. It's the same situation in this case.”

The English teacher reportedly later found out it was one anonymous emailer who turned her into the school board after seeing the picture on the social networking site.

But she is baffled how a parent could gain access to her page when she has all her privacy settings on “high””, meaning only her closest friends have permission to see her pictures.

According to the Daily Mail, she admits putting the “offensive” photos on Facebook but says she now feels as if she had stashed them in a shoebox at home for them to be stolen and showed to the head teacher.

Payne added: “I just want to be back in the classroom, if not that classroom, a classroom. I want to get back doing what I went to school for, my passion in life.” - IOL


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