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DeSoto County Parents Question How Kindergartners Are Being Punished At School

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) - Several parents at a DeSoto County, Mississippi school say their kids were being punished.

Parents of kindergartners at Lake Cormorant Elementary claim a teacher and assistant teacher were spanking students with a ruler, poking them in the chest, and leaving them in a dark closet as punishment.

 "These kids are babies. This is their first year of school. They don't know any better," said mom Tiffany Treece.

Treece is a firm believer that children should be disciplined when they don't act correctly. But she says a kindergarten teacher at Lake Cormorant Elementary School was wrong in how she punished her 6-year-old son Jaden and classmates. Several parents claim the teacher poked their kids in the chest, left them in a dark closet, and spanked them with a ruler.

Treece said, "I can't imagine what kind of ruler it is or how hard she would've done it to actually leave the mark like that on his leg."

These are pictures of 5-year-old Liam O'Kelly's leg Jaden's friend and classmate. Liam told his mom the teacher popped him with the ruler for not being quiet.

"I got hit with the ruler," said Liam.

Jaden added, "She tapped on me."

"She tapped on me too," Liam said.

Parents say the assistant teacher is just as much to blame.

"The boys talked about her kicking the door closed on days when the teacher was out of school that day. That assistant teacher is just as guilty as that teacher for allowing that to go on," said Treece.

Parents we talked to say they signed a form at the beginning of the school allowing corporal punishment if they were notified.

"Corporal punishment by a principal is totally different than being spanked with a ruler at random places on your body," Treece said.

Parents say they love DeSoto County Schools and don't blame anyone but the teacher and the assistant.

Parents tell Local 24 the teacher is no longer in the classroom. But the assistant is.

DeSoto County Schools sent us this statement:

"DeSoto County Schools cannot comment on personnel matters or individual students. DeSoto County Schools has a board-adopted code of discipline and expects all staff to adhere to these guidelines."

At least one parent plans to press charges against the teacher and assistant. And report them to the state board of education.

Desoto County Schools sent us this statement:

"DeSoto County Schools cannot comment on personnel matters or individual students. DeSoto County Schools has a board-adopted code of discipline and expects all staff to adhere to these guidelines."

 


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