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Former Marsh Valley superintendent has certificates revoked

Education

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ARIMO — Marvin Hansen, former Superintendent of the Marsh Valley school district, had his educator and administrator certificates revoked by Idaho’s educator ethics commission Thursday morning.

The Professional Standards Commission found Hansen guilty of violating the state’s educator code of ethics, after allegations that he had sex with his former administrative assistant in the Marsh Valley School District building and in a district vehicle, and that he used a district phone for explicit communications with the staffer. The 18-member commission voted quickly, and without much discussion, to revoke Hansen’s teaching and administrator certificates.

The committee found Hansen’s behavior violated two sections of the ethics code:

  • “A professional educator entrusted with public funds and property honors that trust with a high level of honesty, accuracy, and responsibility,” for using district property for intercourse, Deputy Attorney General Robert Berry said.
  • And “a professional educator ensures just and equitable treatment of all members of the profession in the exercise of academic freedom, professional rights and responsibilities while following generally recognized professional principles,” because Hansen was in a position of power over the staff member he had sex with, Berry said.

Hansen did not immediately respond to EdNews’ request for comment on Thursday.

The revocation is the latest in an ongoing saga over Hansen’s purported actions during his time leading the district. He was embroiled in a sexual harassment complaint filed by the former district employee, demoted for ethical violations and attacked by a man who said Hansen had “forced himself sexually,” on the man’s wife.

Hansen, who had worked as Marsh Valley’s superintendent for 16 years, was demoted to an administrative position last year. State Department of Education records indicate that Hansen does not have a contract with any school district for the 2021-22 school year.

When the PSC issued an administrative complaint against Hansen earlier this year, he requested a public hearing before the commission. However, the PSC says that Hansen failed to answer allegations outlined in the complaint and they ultimately found him in “default,” a situation that allowed proceedings related to the complaint to proceed without his participation.

For more details on the case, read EdNews’ previous reporting.

Jason Brower issued letter of reprimand

Another former Marsh Valley staffer, Jason Brower, agreed to accept a letter of reprimand from the PSC, in a change of course from an earlier suspension of his license.

The standards commission received a complaint that Brower had double-dipped while teaching a dual credit course for Idaho State University while he was an administrator in the Marsh Valley district. Brower anticipated teaching one course, Berry told commissioners on Thursday, but when a large number of students signed up for the class he split it into two class periods with permission from his administrators. Idaho State University paid Brower for two courses. However, Brower taught all of the students during a single class period, Berry said, teaching one class instead of two.

At some point, Idaho State University discovered the inconsistency, Berry said, and Brower ended up returning the teaching stipend for one of those courses. The commission found that Brower violated two ethics principles:

  • “A professional educator exemplifies honesty and integrity in the course of professional practice.”
  • “A professional educator maintains integrity with students, colleagues, parents, patrons, or business personnel when accepting gifts, gratuities, favors, and additional compensation.”

Brower acknowledged there was sufficient evidence for the PSC to put a letter of reprimand on his certificate, but did not admit wrongdoing.

Earlier this year, the PSC voted to suspend Brower’s license, after finding him in default for failing to reply to the commission’s communication about the case, and commissioners voted to suspend his license until he completed an ethics course. When EdNews reached out to Brower, he said he was unaware of the PSC’s proceedings against him, and that the commission had mailed notice of discipline proceedings to an old address.

Brower successfully petitioned the PSC to revisit the default order in July and was allowed to present his side of the case to the commission. After negotiating with Brower and his attorneys, the PSC decided to issue a letter of reprimand instead of the suspension.

Brower is now an administrator in the American Falls school district. He did not immediately respond to EdNews’ request for comment.

This story will be updated if Hansen or Brower issue a comment on Thursday’s PSC decisions.

EdNews staffer Devin Bodkin contributed to this report.

This article was originally posted on IdahoEdNews.org on September 16, 2021

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