County substitute teacher accused of assaulting student

Published 12:03 am Wednesday, May 13, 2015

An investigation was launched into the conduct of a Carter County substitute teacher Monday after a woman told police her son had been assaulted at his school.
On Monday afternoon, the woman filed a report with the Carter County Sheriff’s Department alleging her son was assaulted by a substitute teacher at Keenburg Elementary School.
The woman and her son spoke with CCSD Deputy Amanda Little and the child gave a statement regarding what happened in the classroom.
A friend had been bouncing a ball on a desk and when the ball fell to the floor, the child said he bent down to pick it up. At that time, the substitute teacher grabbed him by the neck and also jerked him by his arm, the child told Little.
The substitute then would not allow the child to leave the room to report the incident to the principal, the child said, adding he was eventually able to speak to the principal about what happened.
After receiving the complaint from the student and parent, the school system began an investigation into the allegation, Carter County Director of Schools Kevin Ward said. As part of the investigation, Keenburg Principal Jason Hartley interviewed several students who witnessed the incident, Ward said.
“It didn’t appear to be any kind of malicious act,” Ward said. “The substitute had actually laid his hand on the student’s shoulder and told him to take a seat.”
“According to Mr. Hartley’s investigation, there was no grabbing or jerking of the arm and the substitute did not place his hands on the student’s neck,” he added.
While the school system’s investigation did not show any assault by the substitute, Ward said the substitute was sent home based on the complaint and will not serve with the school system until the Sheriff’s Department investigation is completed.
“Then we will make a final decision on his future as a substitute with the system,” Ward said.
No further information was available from the Sheriff’s Department regarding the incident or the investigation.

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