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6-Year-Old Girl's Story


This testimony was originally provided to Families Against Seclusion and Restraint (National Group)

Our child was subjected to this seclusion room at school in Missouri. She was 6 yrs old at the time. We told the teacher she is dyslexic or dysgraphia and if she could write any faster she would. She would be the first one out the door to the playground or music and she loved to eat breakfast with the other kids, but we were told to bring her to the classroom and she would copy the sentence off the board and when she got it copied then she would be allowed to eat at school with the other kids.

We talked to the Superintendent about the teacher and our daughter. He said she's capable of doing the work and I said, "If she could work any faster she would--she loves music and recess, please don't punish her for something she can't help."

She played softball for him and we had to keep coaching her to pay attention when she was playing outfield. She also got hit in the head with a bat during a game because she wasn't paying enough attention and another member was warming up and she had to have 3 stitches. The Superintendent knew she had a problem!!

I picked her up at school and she had wet her pants and was so clingy I said what's wrong? She said the teacher had pinched her face like a jelly fish and shook her and she said she was scared. We called the Superintendent and board members. We were told by another parent that the same teacher had taped his nieces mouth shut and the school had done nothing. He also has a child that has a learning disability and she attends another school.

Our daughter was so sick she didn't eat anything but oatmeal for a week. We took her to our doctor who held her and told her not to be afraid, it wouldn't happen again. He told me it was like post traumatic stress she was suffering from this teacher. She was still wetting her pants and at night and was so scared we called children's mercy hotline trying to get her some counseling or help. They said if it wasn't rape or molestation they couldn't help so we we went in person to children's advocacy Cathy S. at Trenton, MO. This all happened at Mercer, MO school.

I then called associates hotline the night I found out about the seclusion room. The Out of home abuse unit came to our house and talked with our daughter and then went to the school to interview the kids in our daughters' class. The children said that the teacher cannot stand her. They said she has to stand in the hall and hold a sign and that the teacher shook her. The teachers in the school that were interviewed all denied seeing anything.

She was always kept in from recess and music because her work was not finished. Our daughter said she was put in a chair and the teacher had a w chain that she hooked around her waist to the chair. She always knew recess was over because she would take the w chain off then she would also take her to the time out room and lock her in when she didn't get her work done. She was so scared after being locked in this room.

Nobody but the kids told the truth so we moved her to another school. At Princeton, RV they tested her for a learning disability. We took her to Dr. M. at Kirksville he said she had post traumatic stress disorder likely caused by this teacher--plus ADHD. At Princeton she was put in special ed for 2 hrs. a day for reading. The occupational therapist works with her one day a week for her hand writing, and she has a Paraprofessional now.

She hid under her desk at Princeton the first few days not trusting anyone. This is a child that always gave hugs to everybody and in preschool was nicknamed the rooms social butterfly--happy and go lucky. It has almost been a year and she is doing a little better, but this teacher remains teaching 1st graders at Mercer school.

The school board did nothing. Another child was also put in the room in kindergarten, his parents got pictures of the room for us. Is there anything that can be done when the educators need educating?

Thank You.
Mom and Dad


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