The Windsor Star
18 October 2011
BY SARAH SACHELI
More than three years after being convicted of sexually assaulting students, Mark Christopher Baggio Tuesday lost his licence to teach.
Baggio, who is serving a four-year sentence in penitentiary, offered no defence at a Ontario College of Teachers disciplinary hearing in Toronto. At the conclusion of the hearing, the panel revoked his licence.
“It’s about time,” said lawyer Richard Pollock, who represents one of the young women Baggio abused. “Justice should be short and swift. It wasn’t in this case.”
The college, the regulatory body for teachers at publicly funded schools in the province, suspended Baggio’s licence in May. But rather than the sanction relating to his criminal convictions, Baggio has been suspended for not paying the college his $120 annual fee. Until then, Baggio remained a teacher “in good standing” in the college’s eyes, despite his criminal convictions.
When asked in the past about Baggio’s status with the college, spokesman have said Baggio was entitled to his licence until all his avenues of appeal were exhausted and a disciplinary hearing was held. There was no rush to hold the hearing, they said, since Baggio was in prison and wouldn’t pose a threat to children.
Baggio was convicted in September 2008 of two counts of sexual assault, two counts of sexual exploitation and two counts of corrupting a child for affairs with two female students between 2000 and 2005.
Both victims were Baggio’s students at Brennan high school where Baggio taught religion and leadership, was a guidance counsellor and coached basketball, volleyball and track and field.
Baggio appealed his conviction and remained free on bail for two years until the Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed his case earlier this year.