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TDSB’s Spence should resign

Re: Top educator admits plagiarism, Jan. 9

Chris Spence has completely lost his credibility and his plagiarism is both an outrage and an embarrassment to an already tarnished Toronto District School Board.

In his apology he said he “wants to set a clear example.” Perhaps the best way is not with empty gestures but rather by doing the right thing — resigning his position.

I believe that Chris Spence can no longer be trusted to make policy decisions on behalf of our children.

Denise Howe, Toronto

TDSB chair Chris Bolton’s remarks characterizing Chris Spence’s plagiarism as an “honest mistake” belies the dishonest nature of the deed. “Honest” in this instance would be equivalent to not knowing what he had done wrong, and Mr. Spence admits he knew he plagiarized and exercised poor judgment in doing so.

When you call someone by the wrong name, that is an honest mistake. When you knowingly steal something, like credit for someone else’s work, that is a dishonest mistake.

“Poor judgment,” yes; “honest mistake,” no. I think it behoves Mr. Bolton to hold Mr. Spence to the same standard as he would any student in the same situation.

David Seeler, Toronto

There are several references to a “mistake” in this article. This is an improper use of the word. Certainly Mr. Spence was aware he was using material written by others so this is not the mistake. The mistake he made was in thinking that he could get away with it.

The board should also not be viewing this as a mistake. It is purely and simply an act of intellectual dishonesty. As such it is not acceptable in a director of education.

Sally Sharpe, Toronto

Dr. Spence chose to plagiarize. Dr. Spence knew better. Dr. Spence should no longer be the director of education. There can be no equivocation here. He should resign immediately.

Sheldon Usprech, Toronto

thestar.com – Opinion