Private school teacher punches assistant principal
A GOLD Coast private school teacher punched an assistant principal in the chest after an argument about a mobile phone confiscated from a student, a court was told.
Terrence Leigh Stanley, 60, quit his job after the altercation at Aquinas College and is unlikely to go back teaching.
Stanley was suffering severe mental health concerns due to bipolar disorder, his barrister Ruth O'Gorman said.
His victim, assistant principal Joe Alexander, has been left with psychological injuries since the assault, the Southport Magistrates Court was told.
Stanley pleaded guilty this morning to one count of common assault.
Police prosecutor Chris Freeman said Stanley was in the deputy principal's officer about 2.30pm on February 21 last year talking about a phone which Stanley had confiscated.
Mr Alexander became concerned when he heard Stanley begin to shout at the deputy principal.
"Mr Alexander has opened the door and seen the deputy principal was sitting down and Stanley standing with an arm pulled back about to punch," Mr Freeman said.
The court was told Mr Alexander calmly told Stanley "he could not do that".
Mr Freeman said Stanley called Mr Alexander a hypocrite before, without warning, punching him to the chest.
Stanley then shut Mr Alexander out of the office twice.
It was only when Stanley's wife, who works at the school, arrived that he was convinced to open the door.
When the door was opened, Stanley yelled at Mr Alexander: "You are a hypocrite, you are disgusting and filthy."
Mr Freeman said Stanley sent an email apology to Mr Alexander in March.
Magistrate Andrew Sinclair placed Stanley on a $1000 good behaviour bond for 12 months.
He also ordered he pay Mr Alexander $500 in compensation.
"Clearly there is no place for violence in the community and even less a school," he said.
Ms O'Gorman told the court Stanley was diagnosed with bipolar in 2005.
She said the teacher had managed it but just after Christmas before the assault Stanley began to relapse.
Ms O'Gorman said there were subtle signs his behaviour was changing which went mostly unnoticed until the day of the assault.
The court was told Stanley spent a month in hospital after the incident.
He has quit teaching and works doing handyman jobs such as mowing.