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Westport English teacher at center of book controversy in September resigned according to Superintendent of Schools



A Westport teacher that was placed on leave after a parent expressed outrage concerning a book reading at his daughter’s school has resigned.

Fall River Reporter contacted Superintendent of Westport Community Schools Thomas Aubin Friday to get an update on the investigation after a parent contacted Reporter in late August stating an English teacher read a book in English class at Westport High to all students that he and his daughter felt was not appropriate.

Aubin stated that the teacher resigned in September and that the district has no further comment on the matter.

The parent stated at the time that his daughter was shocked and confused as to why the teacher was reading the book and other students were in shock.

He sent us an excerpt from the book titled Happy Endings by Margaret Atwood:

“Mary falls in love with John but John doesn’t fall in love with Mary. He merely uses her body for selfish pleasure and ego gratification of a tepid kind. He comes to her apartment twice a week and she cooks him dinner, you’ll notice that he doesn’t even consider her worth the price of a dinner out, and after he’s eaten dinner he f**** her and after that he falls asleep, while she does the dishes so he won’t think she’s untidy, having all those dirty dishes lying around, and puts on fresh lipstick so she’ll look good when he wakes up, but when he wakes up he doesn’t even notice, he puts on his socks and his shorts and his pants and his shirt and his tie and his shoes, the reverse order from the one in which he took them off. He doesn’t take off Mary’s clothes, she takes them off herself, she acts as if she’s dying for it every time, not because she likes sex exactly, she doesn’t, but she wants John to think she does because if they do it often enough surely he’ll get used to her, he’ll come to depend on her and they will get married, but John goes out the door with hardly so much as a good-night and three days later he turns up at six o’clock and they do the whole thing over again.”

The parent at the time also expressed concern that the book talks about suicide and how to accomplish it by taking pills.

“Her friends tell her they’ve seen him in a restaurant with another woman, whose name is Madge. It’s not even Madge that finally gets to Mary: it’s the restaurant. John has never taken Mary to a restaurant. Mary collects all the sleeping pills and aspirins she can find, and takes them and a half a bottle of sherry. You can see what kind of a woman she is by the fact that it’s not even whiskey. She leaves a note for John. She hopes he’ll discover her and get her to the hospital in time and repent and then they can get married, but this fails to happen and she dies.”

After receiving the parental complaint, Reporter contacted the school’s administration in late August and received a response from Superintendent of Westport Community Schools Thomas Aubin.

“Just to let you know, the district has been made aware of a reading assigned to students that was not part of the Westport Community School Curriculum. The Westport Community School administration will address this matter immediately. We appreciate the parental communication regarding this matter.”

In early September, Aubin issued an update through a statement.

“I am providing our school community with an update about the current reading assignment controversy, which is the subject of an investigation at Westport Community Schools. The investigation continues, and the instructor in question has been placed on paid administrative leave pending the results of our inquiry. I can assure you that I speak for the entire Westport Community School staff when I state that our students’ physical and emotional well-being is, and will remain, at the forefront of every decision we make. I thank you for your patience in this matter and will continue to update the community as the process develops.”



  1. Dr. David

    December 1, 2023 at 11:41 pm

    He went to Groom in Greener Pastures

    • MassTexan

      December 2, 2023 at 7:16 pm

      lol hopefully he/she/they/xer/elephant/tube sock is out to pasture. This is what happens when teachers are over worked and underpaid. Teaching positions get filled by unqualified, mentally ill candidates.

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