• DeKalb teacher resigns after past sexual accusations surface

    By: Erica Byfield


    DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - A DeKalb County teacher resigned Friday after questions about his past surfaced.
    Horace Morris worked as a criminal justice teacher at the DeKalb County High School Technology South for three months.
    A spokesperson for the district told Channel 2 Action News a couple of students Googled their teacher and then alerted their principal he may have engaged in a sexual act with a student in the past.
    Quinn Hudson says the district immediately removed Morris from the classroom.
    Morris' termination records show DeKalb officials learned Florida banned him from teaching in 2009 after he entered a nolo contendre plea to a single count of child abuse.
    Legally, a nolo plea means you do not admit to anything and you don't contest the charges.
    Morris was scheduled to have a tribunal on May 2.  He showed up and gave district leaders a resignation letter.
    Channel Two's Erica Byfield spoke to Morris on the phone.
    He answered a few questions and then said he would call back.
    In the wake of Morris' resignation there are some questions about the Georgia background checks he went through. The Professional Standards Commission gives out teaching certificates.
    A P.S.C. spokesperson said Morris received a certificate in 2010 and the state system at the time missed it; but when he reapplied in 2014 for a certificate in another teaching area an updated system flagged his name. 
    DeKalb County Schools leaders contend Morris repeatedly lied on his application.
    Byfield learned district personnel completed a background check and found the information, but the details were not passed on to the Human Resources Department.
    Florida gave Morris five years of probation in 2009.  He is not accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a DeKalb County student.
    A DeKalb School spokesperson says the district sent the District Attorney's Office a letter notifying them Morris may have violated his probation.

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