Teacher admits to drinking before taking students on field trip

Maria Caya's BAC was 0.27, police say

JANESVILLE, Wis. - A group of parents were outraged when they learned an elementary school teacher passed out after apparently drinking before a field trip with students.

Maria Caya, 50, was chaperoning a field trip to a bowling alley in Wisconsin for fourth and fifth grade students when she passed out in the bathroom, according to the police report.

When she was taken to a hospital, testing showed her blood alcohol level was 0.27 – three times the legal limit for driving. Caya also told hospital employees she had been drinking alcohol at 6 a.m. that day, according to the police report.

"I think that person should be stripped of their license and never be able to teach again," said parent Andrew Klund, whose daughter attends a neighboring elementary school. 

Klund says he was shocked the teacher was not brought up at the school board meeting. However, Hesselbacher stresses there were other supervisors present, WKOW reported. 

Board of Education vice president Kristin Hesselbacher says that the board rarely handles personnel issues, and human resources professionals are handling the investigation.

"There isn't really any good news, but all of our students were safe during that time. There were eight other teachers and staff present at that time, so students were never in any danger. But if indeed that all happened, it was clearly inappropriate," Hesselbacher said.

Hesselbacher said the personnel issue would be handled at the district level, and may not make its way up to the Board of Education.