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FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — A culinary arts teacher at Durfee High School is on administrative leave amid allegations he inappropriately touched a student earlier this year.

Paul Coury, 60, has been charged with indecent assault and battery on a person over the age of 14. He pleaded not guilty Wednesday morning.

The investigation began back in January, when the student told a counselor that Coury had inappropriately touched her while she was working the cash register at the high school’s culinary restaurant, according to a police report obtained by 12 News.

Coury will remain on administrative leave until the investigation is complete, according to Superintendent Maria Pontes.

“The safety of our students continues to be our highest priority and we will continue to promptly and proactively address any allegation that may compromise that safety,” Pontes said in a statement.

Coury was ordered to have no contact with the victim and released pending his next court date.

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