Undies and Penis In the Sand: Why a North Brunswick Teacher Lost His Job
NORTH BRUNSWICK — A teacher who had a fixation on underwear and had a sexually laced conversation with a student on social media has had his teaching credentials revoked by the Department of Education.
The district filed tenure charges against Robert Kupcha for "unbecoming conduct, misbehavior, neglect, and insubordination."
Earlier this month, the department's State Board of Examiners revoked his teaching certificates, saying that he engaged in "a pattern of conduct that is inexcusable for a role model," according to a copy of the decision obtained by WPG's sister station, New Jersey 101.5.
The charges date back more than three years when in November 2013 he was found to have engaged in inappropriate contact with a student on social media. School officials said Kupcha discussed underwear with the student and also referred to "engaging in sexual activities with a girl." In a social media post that was visible to the public, Kupcha invited another person to come to his house to drink alcohol.
Kupcha's issues with social media continued in February 2015 when the district said he made another post visible to the public that "identified a student as classified for special education." At that time he was suspended for six days without pay.
In his response to the charges, Kupcha did not deny sending the messages but rather said he did not realize they were open to public viewing.
In addition to the social media issues, Kupcha was also alleged to have sent an anonymous email to the district's administration in April 2014 claiming to be a parent. The email complained about an aide in his classroom and praised Kupcha.
He also ran into trouble in the district in May 2015 for a NJ ASK security breach when he left what were supposed to be secure testing materials in an open mailbox.
Kupcha's issues came to a head in October 2015 when he drew a picture of male genitals into the sand of the Linwood Middle School baseball field and sent a picture of it to 14 other staff members. Employees who received the picture described it as "unsurprising, inappropriate, and offensive."
Following that incident, he was removed on "Authorized School Business Leave." He further complicated his issues by violating directives to not contact any other students or staff until the district had completed their investigation, officials said.
The State Board of Examiners noted that Kupcha had made other inappropriate comments to colleagues, including trying to make a bet with one where the loser would have to run around in their underwear in front of Kupcha's colleague's wife. He is also alleged to have offered a substitute teacher extra money if they ran the baseball field in their underwear and sent the man late night texts saying he wanted them to spend time wearing "just their underwear."
North Brunswick Superintendent Brian Zychowski declined to comment when reached.