Two Paraprofessionals Removed From Detroit School, One Faces Charges of Abuse And Assault

In Southfield, two paraprofessionals who worked with special needs children were expelled from the school for assaulting the kids they were responsible for, as confirmed by a representative of Detroit Public Schools. One of the paraprofessionals who was expelled is currently facing prosecution.

In connection with an incident where she allegedly put her hands around a 12-year-old student’s neck, shook him, and lifted him from his chair by his neck.

Moses Field Center paraprofessional Felicia Perkins, 51, faces charges of fourth-degree child abuse and misdemeαnour assault in Wayne County, as stated in an employee disciplinary report from the Detroit Public School district.

Wayne County Assistant Prosecutor Maria Miller declared that Perkins is accused of strangling the youngster and forcibly dragging him out of the cafeteria while gripping the back of his neck. Miller also mentioned that charges were filed in May.

The DPS punishment report indicates a video of the January incident involving the 12-year-old student was captured. Per the report, Perkins stated in a written statement that she felt scared due to the student’s threats of having multiple family members attαck her.

Two Paraprofessionals Removed From Detroit School, One Faces Charges of Abuse And Assault

The report reveals that the district acquired additional video footage from four days before the incident, which shows Perkins, who was 12 years old at the time, swatting at another child and forcefully yanking his arm and chair after he pointed a shoe towards her.

Per meeting minutes, Perkins was dismissed from the Detroit public schools last week during the board of education meeting.

At a news conference on Thursday, the 12-year-old boy’s mother, Tina Gross, said she did not know about the paraprofessional’s alleged assault on her son from the school.

She first learned about the assault from another person, and it wasn’t until she received a subpoena to appear in court from Detroit’s 36th District Court that she discovered how severe the assault had been.

“I really want justice for my son and I really want that principal to be removed,” Gross stated at a press briefing on Thursday.

Gross stated that her son is functioning at a kindergarten level.

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“No one from the school called to inform me of anything,” Gross stated. “My son came home and said that he was choked and slapped by a teacher. I didn’t know what to believe until I received the (subpoena).”

DPS Assistant Superintendent of Communications, Chrystal Wilson, confirmed that the district no longer employs a second paraprofessional involved in the child abuse investigation at Moses Field.

The paraprofessional’s dismissal is not noted in the school board minutes, and Wilson did not answer when asked to explain if the individual resigned or was fired. Wilson claimed that the probe uncovered the paraprofessional’s “improper conduct”.

Attorney Caroletta Sprinkle, defending Gross and other students’ families at Moses Field, asserted that she is confident that different families and kids in Detroit have also been subjected to abuse, neglect, or illegal restraints.

“You trust in your heart the individuals who work in these positions will properly care for your child,” Sprinkle stated. “School should be a safe environment for all children regardless of special needs.”

Sprinkle said that Detroit’s public schools must be held accountable and undergo certain adjustments.

“We are looking for policy changes, we’re looking for administrative changes and we’re looking for corrections,” Sprinkle remarked at a press briefing on Thursday.

“This is something these parents weren’t aware of, that the children aren’t able to speak on. If we don’t include those measures in a lawsuit it’s just going to continue to happen.”

The parent of a 6-year-old girl who was allegedly struck in the back of the head by a teacher, Angela Leaks, suggested that the principal be disciplined for apparently knowing about the abuse but doing nothing to stop it.

Wilson stated there is no proof that managers or personnel were aware of the mistreatment.

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Leaks revealed during the press conference on Thursday that she asked her daughter about her knowledge of the issues at Moses Brown after reading about them in an article from the Detroit Native Sun. Leak’s daughter reported being struck on the head by her teacher.

She took her daughter out of school in April because she was too worried to let her stay. Leak currently homeschools her daughter and does her best to educate her.

Tanisha Floyd discovered that police were investigating the abuse for the first time in June, just a week before the school year concluded. An officer informed her that her daughter was one of the children involved in the investigation.

Floyd revealed that her 12-year-old daughter had been left in a restraint chair for several hours, and on two occasions, her daughter had multiple diapers, while once she had dirty pants in a bag upon returning home.

Floyd stated that her daughter began to regress and became more emotional, experiencing morning screams and resistance towards going to school, as she now realizes that her daughter’s outbursts resulted from fear and the need for support.

“She’ll sit in that chair all day and she wasn’t even getting changed right,” Floyd stated. “I was furious. I was super furious because no one told me anything. … It was heart dropping to even hear about it because my child is non-verbal and doesn’t walk on her own; she needs help with everything.”

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