An extremely violent physical confrontation broke out between two boys at an an inner-city Detroit high school, but it was their teacher who received the harshest punishment: She was fired — and could face child abuse charges — for attempting to break up the fight.
The teacher, an unnamed female, was an employee of Pershing High School. The fight, which lasted about 30 seconds, broke out in her classroom. The two unleashed a tornado of fury against each other, crashing into desks and pummeling each other with terrifying ferocity.
The teacher, fearing that someone could suffer a serious injury, pleaded with them to stop. When they did not, she took hold of a broom and struck one of the boys on the back in an attempt to make him stop.
For this, she was fired. Teachers are supposed to contact security personnel to break up fights rather than taking matters into their own hands.
“The termination is effective immediately,” said Chrystal Wilson, a representative for Education Achievement Authority, an organization that runs the public school on behalf of the state of Michigan, in a statement to The Detroit Free Press. “She will have an opportunity, like any other employee, to meet with the board as they consider this recommendation at its next scheduled board meeting.”
The boys, on the other hand, will return to school after serving a 10-day suspension.
The fight was captured on video. Its sheer destructiveness has many people suggesting that the teacher was right to try to break it up, even if that required her to wield a broom. One of the two boys, Kiren Lowery, was on top of the other, viciously beating him, when the teacher decided to hit him with the broom. (RELATED: Texas teen makes violent joke during video game, is jailed for months)
“I don’t think the rules have accounted for the change in the culture… the realities and contexts in which our teachers are operating,” said Keith Johnson, president of the Detroit Federation of Teachers, in a statement.
Teachers are supposed to use their walkie talkies to alert security when fights break out, but this teacher’s device was broken, according to Fox 2 news.
Still, striking a student with a broom is a violation of state laws against corporal punishment. That means the teacher has not only lost her job, she could also be charged with child abuse.
Lowery said his teacher deserved to be fired for hurting him. (RELATED: Felony weapons charge for student who brought fishing supplies to school)
“I think that’s what she deserves,” he said in a statement.
Lowery’s mother showed local reporters where her son had been struck. None of the marks were still visible. She did not chide her son for pinning and beating another student.