Traverse City Record-Eagle

Archive: Tuesday

April 15, 2014

Suttons Bay High School teacher resigns after kiss with student

SUTTONS BAY — A Suttons Bay High School teacher had an “inappropriate,” but not illegal, relationship with a student in the senior class, the school district’s top administrator said.

Teacher Amy Linck, 31, submitted her resignation last week after she admitted she and a male student, 18, kissed during a service trip to the Dominican Republic, Superintendent Michael Murray said.

“We didn’t find evidence of any sexual contact, but the relationship is inappropriate for a teacher and a student,” Murray said.

Linck couldn’t be reached for comment. She worked for Suttons Bay Public Schools since 2008, taught Spanish classes and led students on several service trips abroad.

Linck took four students to the Dominican Republic this spring break, a move that ultimately led to her resignation.

Murray said Linck and her husband told school officials last week about the kiss with the student, a senior with whom she also exchanged text messages before the trip.

He said officials later learned that a student or students may have drank alcohol during the trip, which wasn’t school-organized or approved. The Dominican Republic’s drinking age is 18, but Murray said Linck nonetheless acted unprofessionally.

“There were some actions on the field trip that concerned me,” Murray said. “When I understood there was a kiss involved, that was when I stepped in and took action.”

Michigan law forbids teachers from having sexual contact with students over the age of consent, which is 16. But the law’s scope stops when students turn 18.

Murray said the district’s attorneys informed him the matter didn’t appear to be a criminal act because of the student’s age. He doesn’t plan to forward details to law enforcement.

Leelanau County Sheriff Mike Borkovich said his deputies haven’t investigated the case.

“Nothing’s crossed my desk yet,” he said.

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