Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Former Nature Coast Technical High School coach loses state teaching certificate over affair with student

BROOKSVILLE — A former Nature Coast Technical High School physical education teacher and head football coach accused of having a romantic relationship with a student in 2009 won't be teaching again in Florida.

The state Education Practices Commission has voted to permanently revoke James "Jamie" Joyner's teaching certificate. It's the most severe of the sanctions the commission could have levied.

Joyner, 37, faced six counts of violations of state law or the administrative code. Among them: engaging in gross immorality or an act involving moral turpitude; exploiting a relationship with a student for personal gain; and intentionally exposing a student to unnecessary embarrassment or disparagement.

Last October, after a state-level investigation, then-Education Commissioner Eric Smith recommended the commission take action against Joyner ranging from a written reprimand to permanent revocation of his certificate.

Joyner requested an informal hearing, which means he did not dispute the allegations in the administrative complaint, a Department of Education spokeswoman said. He did not submit any materials for his case and did not attend the hearing last Friday in Tallahassee.

He could not be reached for comment this week.

Joyner resigned in April 2009 as the district investigated suspicions that he had a romantic relationship with a Nature Coast student, possibly before the girl turned 18. He denied having a sexual relationship with her.

The teen's family initially defended Joyner, telling school officials that they trusted him and didn't believe anything inappropriate occurred. Joyner and his then-wife, Kelly, a teacher and coach at Nature Coast, have two young sons, and the couple had dinners with the teen's family and exchanged gifts for special occasions.

Joyner told district officials at that time that he would not have any contact with the student or her family until the investigation ran its course. About a week later, a Hernando sheriff's deputy patrolling the area around the Microtel Inn in Ridge Manor West saw Joyner's truck and the student's car parked in the hotel lot. The student, who at that point was 18, told authorities she was there with Joyner on her own accord.

Joyner resigned two days later. Three days after that, the teen's parents contacted the Hernando Sheriff's Office, telling investigators they found "love letters" that Joyner had written to their daughter and that the two had admitted they were in a relationship.

The criminal investigation was closed after detectives were unable to find evidence that a sexual relationship began before the student turned 18. She graduated that June. Public records indicated that Joyner and the teen later moved to Tallahassee and were living in the same apartment. It's unclear if they still live together.

The St. Petersburg Times has not identified the teen because the allegations against Joyner involved activities that would have taken place when she was a minor.

The Joyners' divorce was finalized last March, county records show.

Times news researcher Carolyn Edds contributed. Tony Marrero can be reached at (352) 848-1431 or

Former Nature Coast Technical High School coach loses state teaching certificate over affair with student 06/29/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 29, 2011 8:24pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. 'Garbage juice' seen as threat to drinking water in Florida Panhandle town


    To Waste Management, the nation's largest handler of garbage, the liquid that winds up at the bottom of a landfill is called "leachate," and it can safely be disposed of in a well that's 4,200 feet deep.

    Three samples that were displayed by Jackson County NAACP President Ronstance Pittman at a public meeting on Waste Management's deep well injection proposal. The sample on the left is full of leachate from the Jackson County landfill, the stuff that would be injected into the well. The sample on the right shows leachate after it's been treated at a wastewater treatment plant. The one in the middle is tap water.
  2. Registered sexual predator charged in assault of woman in Brooksville

    Public Safety

    Times Staff Writer

    BROOKSVILLE — Hernando County deputies arrested a registered sexual predator Thursday after they say he attempted to assault a woman and fled into a storm drain.

    Lee Roy Rettley has been charged with attempted homicide, attempted sexual battery and home invasion robbery.
  3. Honda denies covering up dangers of Takata air bags


    With just a third of the defective Takata air bag inflators replaced nationwide, the corporate blame game of who will take responsibility — and pay — for the issue has shifted into another gear.

    Honda is denying covering up dangers of Takata air bags. | [Scott McIntyre, New York Times]
  4. Former CEO of Winn-Dixie parent joining Hong Kong company


    The former CEO of the Jacksonville-based parent of Winn-Dixie grocery stores, Ian McLeod, has landed a new leadership role in Hong Kong. He is joining the pan-Asian based Dairy Farm International Holdings Ltd. as group chief executive.

    Ian McLeod, who is stepping down as the CEO of the parent company of Winn-Dixie, has been hired by Dairy Farm International Holdings. 
[Photo courtesy of Southeastern Grocers]
  5. Eckerd Kids: Teens in group foster homes must be allowed to keep phones


    TAMPA — For many teens still reeling from being taken into foster care, a cell phone is a lifeline, child advocates say.

    Eckerd Kids, the agency that runs child welfare in Tampa Bay, will in January require agencies that run group foster homes to allow children to use cell phones. Some group homes are concerned that children may use phones for unathorized contract with their parents or other adults or to post pictures of other foster children on social media