‘Tiger teacher’ removed at SNU as probe proceeds

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‘Tiger teacher’ removed at SNU as probe proceeds

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Kim In-hye

Seoul National University has removed Professor Kim In-hye - who is accused of violent teaching methods - from her position as a vocal music professor and dean of the Department of Vocal Music until the university’s disciplinary committee decides on what action to take against her. A punitive committee session is expected to be held this week.

The decision to remove her was made in the wake of growing public criticism of Kim for using inappropriate, violent methods with her students, including corporal punishment. Kim is also accused of using school facilities for personal reasons and forcing students to sell concert tickets and bring her gifts.

The university said Kim was removed because of concern that her position within the university could interfere with the investigation.

On Monday, Kim submitted a 20-page written response to an inquiry from the university’s investigation team, in which she denied most of the allegations by explaining her stance on suspicions that she used violence and solicited gifts. Kim’s lawyer says the allegations were exaggerated.

Controversy over Kim’s case grew after a group of Kim’s students submitted a petition to the university alleging wrongdoings by Kim, and more allegations were made.

SNU recently obtained testimony from Kim’s students that she used the school auditorium for personal purposes, which is banned by the university.

They also were told that Kim forced students to sing at her mother-in-law’s 80th birthday party last October. A video clip spread on the Internet after the allegation surfaced, showing a dozen students in dresses and tuxedos singing at the party. Kim claims that she paid them for their participation.

Meanwhile, Kim continues to deny allegations that she said her students mistook music education’s long tradition of strict apprenticeship as violence. She also said that she has never forced students to buy concert tickets because her concerts always sell out.


By Yim Seung-hye [enational@joongang.co.kr]


Related Korean Article[연합]

서울대 김인혜 교수 중징계 요청

[김 교수, 동료들에 ‘탄원서 제출’ 호소]

서울대가 '제자 폭행' 등 비위 의혹을 받고 있는 김인혜 음대 교수에 대해 정직 이상의 중징계를 요청한 것으로 나타났다.

서울대 관계자는 22일 "김인혜 교수 사건과 관련해 어제 징계위원회 소집 결정을 하면서 중징계 의결을 요구했다"며 "국가공무원법상 직위해제도 중징계 요청 시 가능한 것"이라고 말했다.

중징계는 파면, 해임 등 정직 이상의 인사조치로, 김 교수는 파면이나 해임 결정을 받으면 서울대 교단을 떠나야 한다.

다만 서울대 관계자는 "요청과는 달리 징계 의결권자의 판단에 따라 중징계를 내리지 않을 수도 있다"고 설명했다.


서울대는 김 교수에게 징계위 회부 사실을 통보하고 28일 오전 징계위 첫 회의를 열 방침이다.

혐의 입증과 소명절차를 충분히 거쳐야 하기 때문에 최종 징계 여부와 수위는 첫 회의보다는 다음달 열리는 후속 회의에서 결정될 것으로 보인다.

한편 김 교수는 최근 친분이 있는 동료 교수들에게 연락해 서울대에 탄원서를 제출해 달라고 요청한 것으로 알려졌다.

한 음대 교수는 "김 교수가 며칠 전 전화해 '음해세력 탓에 희생당했다. 도와달라'며 탄원서를 써달라고 했다. 어떻게 해야 할지 고민 중이다"고 말했다.

서울대는 21일 김 교수 측으로부터 폭행 등 의혹에 관한 답변서를 제출받았으며 이날 오후 김 교수를 직위해제하고 징계위에 회부했다.

김 교수는 진정 등을 통해 제자 상습폭행과 금품수수, 직무태만 등의 비위 의혹을 받고 있다.

그러나 김 교수는 답변서에서 관련 의혹을 대부분 부인한 것으로 알려졌다.

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