Byline: TERESA STEPZINSKI
BRUNSWICK -- It wasn't a slap on the wrist, but it wasn't the toughest penalty the state could have imposed, either.
Michael Bull, fired Glynn County schools superintendent, has had his teaching certification suspended retroactively for his use of a school system BlackBerry to solicit sex over the Internet.
The Professional Standards Commission, which licenses educators in Georgia, voted unanimously Thursday to suspend Bull's certification from Feb. 20, which is when the Glynn County school board fired him, through July 7, said John Grant, the commission's chief investigator.
Bull was sanctioned for misuse of public property, an ethics violation, in a negotiated settlement with the commission, said Gary Walker, director of its Educator Ethics Division, on Monday.
Walker said commission investigators had recommended suspending Bull's certification for a full 180-day teaching contract year but agreed to cut the penalty in half in exchange for Bull's acceptance of the discipline.
"When you looked at what he'd done, it was appropriate," said Walker, noting Bull received a harsher penalty than a teacher would have in similar circumstances.
Bull, who lists Port Royal, S.C., as his home, couldn't be reached for comment Monday. When fired, he declined comment about his dismissal and hasn't responded to subsequent Times-Union efforts to contact him.
The commission has the authority to impose sanctions ranging from a warning to revocation of an educator's certification in Georgia.
Glynn school board Chairman Millard Allen said Monday he and other board members did what needed to be done in the case by reporting Bull's behavior to the standards commission. …