Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Loudoun Schoolteacher's Past Comes to Light at Hearing

By Michael Birnbaum, Maria Glod
The Washington Post/
May 19, 2009

A Loudoun County teacher became the focus of a congressional hearing today on restraining school children as government investigators reported that a child in her classroom at a Texas public school died seven years ago when she lay atop him after he refused to stay in his seat.

Dawn Marie Hamilton, a special education teacher at Park View High School in Sterling, was not criminally charged in the 2002 death of 14-year old Cedric Napoleon. But an administrative judge found the teacher used “excessive and unnecessary force,” according to Texas records, and upheld a decision to list her on a state registry of individuals found to have abused or neglected children.

Read more HERE.


Janis Sartucci said...

The tone is set at the top. Does the school system have respect for children? Here in Montgomery County we have Board members calling parents names and a Superintendent who refers to our children as "cream of the crap". Board members and staff both think these phrases are "funny". But this sets the tone for how administrators and teachers deal with parents and children.

Pain in the Ass parents:

Video of statement (at 7:30 of video)

"Cream of the Crap" kids:

Janis Sartucci said...

Sorry, the last link above was when a MCPS staff member made fun of students and parents at a convention.
Here is the link to the Superintendent calling our kids "cream of the crap".

Special Needs Mom said...

As one mother said in her testimony, if she sat on her child to restrain him to the point of death, she would be charged with murder. But if a teacher does it, they just go get another job in another state?

We prosecute people for treating animals like this, but apparently not those who harm and/or kill children with special needs. In Texas and California alone there were over 30,000 cases of injury and abuse via restraint and seclusion in public schools last year. Are children with illness and/or special needs truly seen as being this dispensable, this disposable?

How a society treats its most vulnerable defines that society.
My heartfelt thanks to the Congressman, parents and reporters who have brought this news to the light. Bless you all.

Anonymous said...

HI Janis
I just went to the link you posted ar 8:54 this am and the video is not running any longer. Do you think they got a call from MCPS?

LegalBeaglette said...

This story is disturbing on so many fronts. One of the worst parts of it for me is that this teacher went back to teaching. If you had killed a child, could you go back into that environment again? Would you even provide childcare? I just know I couldn't. The sorrow, the guilt, the horror would overwhelm me, and I would never want to be responsible for anyone's children again, likely not even my own.