Italian teacher sacked after missing 20 years of school

Home*Cover Story*International

Italian teacher sacked after missing 20 years of school

Some people take the public servant stereotype too far.

A teacher in Italy has been sacked for missing 20 years of school during her 24 year long career.

Cinzia Paolina De Lio was initially dismissed in 2017 after she suddenly reappeared on the job for four months and triggered complaints.

She sued the education ministry and a court ruled 1 year later that she had to be reinstated.

The Education Ministry appealed and the matter reached all the way to Italy’s Supreme Court who confirmed her dismissal saying her absences showed a “permanent and absolute ineptitude”.

For the first 10 years Ms De Lio was completely absent, and her absences in the other 14 years were attributed to sickness, personal or family reasons.

The court heard that when she did teach, students complained of her lack of preparedness, her failure to bring textbooks and her “random and improvised” way of marking.

A teaching inspector also found that students refused to take part in her classes as she was distracted by her phone.

Ms De Lio has condemned the ruling and vowed to “reconstruct the truth”.

The secondary school teacher, who specialises in history and philosophy, said she had documents to prove her story.

However when she was contacted by an Italian newspaper for a comment on the ruling, she said she was unable to discuss the issue as she was currently at the beach.