Principal warned Harvey Knotts about "inappropriate behavior" - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Principal warned Harvey Knotts about "inappropriate behavior"

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The personnel file of a Huntsville teacher arrested on seven counts of sexual abuse against five McDonnell Elementary students shows school leaders warned Harvey Knotts about inappropriate behavior about a year ago.

Knotts was hired by the Huntsville school system on July 31, 2008, his first paid teaching job in the United States. On May 13, 2010, Knotts received a written warning from McDonnell principal Allen Malone.

In the letter addressed to Knotts, Malone wrote,"Several teachers have expressed concerns with your tendencies. This prompted me to tell of the inappropriateness of this type of fraternization."

Malone does not go into detail about Knotts' behavior but added that he felt the need to remind him of the "importance of being professional with your fellow colleagues and student teachers."

Malone warned that if Knotts did not address that issue and others, further disciplinary action may be taken.

Knotts' file also showed that his time at McDonnell wasn't his first experience in a classroom. While studying education at Oakwood College, Knotts was a student teacher at Madison Elementary School in the 2002-2003 school year. He spent time in a second grade and sixth grade classroom.

In writing about his past experience with kids, Knotts wrote, "He fostered a safe and fun learning environment," and he had "constant interaction with children, serving as a leader and role model."

A key element Knotts left off of his application, though, was the years he spent in Bermuda after graduating from Oakwood.

He simply wrote that he owned a painting business from 2004 through 2007 and that he also worked as a hospital porter during that time.  However, he did not list where that those businesses were in Bermuda.


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