DeKalb teacher accused of beating special needs elementary student with stick

by: Amy Napier Viteri Updated:

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STONE MOUNTAIN, Ga. - Channel 2 Action News has learned DeKalb County schools are investigating allegations an elementary teacher verbally and physically abused special needs students.

Adult witnesses inside Stone Mountain Elementary reported that a teacher hit special needs students with a stick over a period of time.

The district confirmed to Channel 2's Amy Napier Viteri that they are investigating and have removed that teacher from the classroom.

"They should be fired, taken out of the school system and charged," said a mother named Roshonda, who has two children at the school.

A DeKalb school representative said in a statement, "The district has received an allegation that a teacher at Stone Mountain Elementary School verbally and physically abused special needs students at the school."

Roshonda told Viteri the district should take quick action.

"Finding out what's going on and some charges should be filed, especially if these children can't take up for themselves," she said.

A source familiar with the case told Viteri that adult witnesses who work at the school saw the teacher use a stick to hit children, some of whom are unable to communicate verbally. Those witnesses eventually reported the incidents.

"If they knew about it, I think they should have come forward," Roshonda said.

A representative for the district said the accused teacher had been removed from the school and that they
had notified the DeKalb County Department of Family and Children Services child welfare division.

They also said the district is taking the charges very seriously and Superintendent Michael Thurmond ordered the district's Office of Legal Affairs to begin a full investigation.

"We have to take charge every day of our children and make sure they are being protected in our school systems," Roshonda said.

So far there have been no arrests and the school district has not been able to give Channel 2 Action News a copy of any incident report.

The district has scheduled a meeting with the parents of the alleged victims and said the investigation is ongoing.