VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. (WESH)— A Florida elementary school teacher wants to press charges against one of her students.
She claims that the 9-year-old girl hit her, and the incident happened in the classroom.
That teacher has now filed a report with the sheriff’s department.
The alleged victim teaches third grade at Woodward Avenue Elementary School in DeLand. She said the student hit her when the teacher told her to pick up a book that the student allegedly threw.
“There are no other professions that exist where it would be okay or acceptable to be hit by anyone,” said Volusia United Educators president Elizabeth Albert.
Albert said she was disappointed, but not surprised that a student allegedly hit a teacher. She said it’s not the norm, but it’s not rare, either, and according to the sheriff’s report, “this was not the first time that she (the student) had become physical with the staff.”
Albert said more and more often, teachers trained to deliver academic content are being asked to deal with social and emotional needs.
“What we really need more of are the licensed, mental health specialists, professionals who can help the children and give them the support they really need,” Albert said.
Officials said the teacher, in her first year with Volusia County schools, asked the student to pick up a text book the 9-year-old threw on the classroom floor. According to the report, the student, “refused and punched her (the teacher) in the right hand.”
The teacher didn’t need medical attention, but feels so strongly she’s pressing charges.
“We should have folks looking at our kids who are in crisis and determining what interventions are going to make them successful,” Albert said.
In a statement, a district spokesman wrote, “We are aware of the allegations. School administration is looking into the situation.”
The school district won’t comment on what, if any, discipline the student faces based on the allegation. The union president said per the contract, a student who acts out against a teacher is at the very least suspended.
According to the teacher’s union, there have been several instances this year alone in which teachers or staff members had to go to the hospital or urgent care for an injury allegedly made by a student, but that was not the case with this incident. The teacher did not need medical attention.