After paid leave, former ‘Teacher of Year’ resigns

Washougal High Spanish teacher had been on paid leave since May

Nearly three months after being placed on paid administrative leave, a longtime Washougal High School Spanish teacher and 2010 state finalist for Teacher of the Year, has resigned.

Brian Eggleston, resigned his position effective June 23. He had worked at the high school since 2005 and earned honors for his teaching methods. Then, in early May, district leaders placed Eggleston on paid administrative leave and declined to give a specific reason.

When contacted by the Post-Record in May, Eggleston denied any wrongdoing and said he heard there were allegations of inappropriate behavior stemming from a grading issue.

“I have not been fired and nothing (inappropriate) happened,” Eggleston said in May. “The students know it, and it will clear up shortly.”

Washougal School District Superintendent Mike Stromme confirmed that Eggleston had resigned, but noted that school district cannot comment on personnel matters.

“A (new) Spanish teacher has been hired and will begin their new teaching assignment at the start of the 2017-18 school year,” Stromme said.

Frank Zahn, president of the Washougal Association of Educators, noted that Eggleston was represented by the teachers’ union in the matter and that no wrongdoing had been uncovered.

“Mr. Eggleston received the advice of his local union leadership, regional Washington Education Association consultation, and WEA legal opinions,” Zahn said. “The concerns brought against Mr. Eggleston by the Washougal School District have been examined and addressed … While there are no findings that merit any legal involvement or violations of law, Mr. Eggleston chose to resign from employment with the district.”

In 2010, Educational Service District 112 named Eggleston Regional Teacher of the Year. In a Post-Record article written that year, Eggleston’s co-workers and parents of his students described the Spanish teacher as an enthusiastic, fun and inspiring educator.

Eggleston completed his student teaching in Tacoma and Olympia, Washington, and worked as a provisional teacher in Oakland, California. He has taught English classes in Madrid, Spain; worked as a tutor at South Puget Sound Community College in Olympia; and was a Spanish teaching assistant at Seattle Central Community College before coming to Washougal.

“We wish Mr. Eggleston a continued career full of the excellence he exhibited in Washougal,” Zahn said. “He will be missed by his associates and we know that he will continue his effective education with students in the future.”