An elementary school teacher in San Antonio, Texas, is facing criminal charges after she allegedly ordered students in her kindergarten class to strike a six-year-old boy who was accused of being a bully.
According to a police report handed to the Bexar County District Attorney's office last week, a Ricardo Salinas Elementary School teacher complained to another teacher that Aiden Neely was "a bully in her classroom," and asked her for advice on how to discipline him.
Neely was then reportedly brought into the kindergarten classroom of the second teacher, and told to sit on a chair. Students were instructed to line up in front of Aiden and slap him in turn, "to teach him why bullying is bad." The report states that certain students hit Aiden twice as the teacher demanded they "hit him harder."
"He had friends in that class and some of his friends didn't want to hit him but the other teacher told them to," said Aiden's mother Amy.
Aiden never told his mom about what transpired at school — at the behest of his teacher, according to Ms. Neely — and the incident was not reported until weeks after it took place. Both teachers were immediately placed on administrative leave.
Ms. Neely, who insists Aiden is not a bully, says she wants charges filed against the teacher to ensure she doesn't set foot in a classroom again. "I'm concerned that this teacher is going to be back in the school system and teaching other children and she doesn't need to be around any children," she said.
Steve Linscomb, a spokesman for the Judson Independent School District, said the teacher who allegedly arranged the "bullying lesson" will not be returning, but the teacher who initially complained about Aiden will be allowed back.
"This teacher is a relatively young teacher and just needed to be re-educated and reminded what needs to happen in the classroom in order for it to be a safe learning environment," said Linscomb.