Teachers Caught On Tape Bullying A Child With Special Needs

There’s been a lot of attention paid in recent years to the bullying of kids by other kids. And now, another bullying problem has been thrust into the spotlight, one that is even more mind-boggling. It involves a teacher bullying a student, one who has special needs. And, yes, OMG.

When Cheyanne, a 14-year-old with disabilities then at Miami Trace Middle School in Ohio, started resisting going to school, her parents finally found out why: Her teacher, Christy Wilt, and her classroom aide, Kelly Chaffens, were bullying her. The school refused to believe them, so the father wired up his daughter with a mike to get proof. What got caught on tape: four days of verbal abuse and taunts. I’m warning you now, this video is upsetting and downright painful to watch.

“Are you that damn dumb?”

“No wonder you don’t have friends.”

“Don’t you want to do something to get rid of that belly? You don’t do anything at home…you sit.”

The aide, Kelly Chaffens, resigned; she’d been with Cheyanne for four years. The school required the teacher to complete eight hours of anti-bullying and child abuse training. Finally, on Monday, the school put Christy Wilt on unpaid leave until the end of the school year.

The parents are taking legal action to help ensure this teacher is never again around kids, let alone ones with special needs—and doing their best to help their daughter get past this.

As always, when something awful like this happens to a kid, you hope it will raise awareness and prevent it from recurring. It’s a reminder to all of us to make occasional visits to our kids’ classrooms and pay attention to our child’s signals about school, whether or not you have a child with special needs. If you have a child who is not able to verbally express thoughts, as I do, and you ever have any suspicions about abuse, do not hesitate to discuss them with the principal or other authority.

When we hand over our children to teachers, we trust them to educate them, nurture them and do them right. Teachers who are warped enough to treat a child this way need serious psychological help. But I also wish these two women would get jail time. Because treating a kid like that, any kid, is criminal.

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  1. by Sherry Huang

    On November 15, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    This is so chilling. I can’t believe those teachers – and I can’t believe the main teacher only got unpaid leave.

  2. by rebecca

    On November 15, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    disgusting

  3. by nicole

    On November 15, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    I was an aide to a special needs student and can not imagine treating any of them this way. Yes sometimes you get frustrated; walk away for a little bit, or switch to something else cause you know.the student is just as frustrated. These women need to not work with kids ever again. Obviously this is not the right job for them, maybe they should work in a jail so they can feel what it is like to be pushed around, called names, and treated like crap.

  4. by ERIN

    On November 15, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    My daughter is not special needs but has been going through the same thing…..maybe I should wire her and get the proof cause the school is not listening to me or her. This makes me sick :(

  5. by Cody

    On November 15, 2011 at 11:53 pm

    I work in a jail and I can tell you that speaking in such a way to an inmate would likely get you killed. These women need to lose everything they have and everything they might have, forever. They committed a criminal act and should pay a criminal penalty. There are far too many qualified people standing in line for an unemployment check, to have cruel, heartless monsters such as these in classrooms with our children. If you wonder why the teacher hasn’t been fired, then look at the teachers unions for the answer. Sue the unions too for polluting the schools with incompetent and abusive teachers.

  6. by Special needs and bullying | NPSKIDS

    On November 16, 2011 at 7:31 am

    [...] article jumped out at me this morning. It made me sick to think about that tjs actually goes on. bullying and special needs Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. This entry was posted in [...]

  7. [...] Read the full article here: Teachers Caught On Tape Bullying A Child With Special Needs [...]

  8. by Berit Thorkelson

    On November 16, 2011 at 12:04 pm

    This makes me physically ill. Heartbreaking. I can’t believe swift criminal action was not taken against both the teacher & teacher’s aide. They should be legally banned from ever working with children again.