Mom: teacher strapped special needs child to chair with masking tape

A Bradford Exempted Village Schools teacher is on paid administrative leave after parents alleged he used masking tape to strap their special needs child to a chair during class because the child was slouching.

District officials confirmed Tuesday that a teacher is on administrative leave, and they have “a situation under investigation.” However, they declined to give details, noting that Superintendent Ken Miller was not available.

“Teachers are supposed to help build confidence, not tear it down,” said the child’s mother, whose name is not being used so her child is not identified. “I just want the district to do what’s right and do what’s right for these kids.”

The mother of the junior high student said she wants a criminal investigation done and district employees to be educated about different types of special needs. “It’s abuse, and it shouldn’t happen in school,” she said of the incident, which occurred on Oct. 21.

The mother said the teacher told the child’s father that the student slouched and was asked to sit up, and when the child did it again, the teacher put masking tape around the student. The mother said tape also was put across her child’s mouth.

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Dave Duchak, Chief Deputy in the Miami County Sheriff’s Office, said that office was notified Monday of the incident and is investigating.

“The detectives haven’t interviewed the alleged victim yet, so we need to interview (them); there were other students that were there, and if the teacher’s willing to talk to us, we can have all the facts,” Duchak said. “We don’t know if there are any possible criminal charges yet.”

Duchak said there was no 911 call because the parents made a complaint with Miami County Children’s Services. Duchak also said that a law enforcement incident report won’t be done until witnesses have been interviewed.

The student’s mother said her child told her the other children laughed during the incident, and that her child is “mortified.”

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