Teacher Knocks 2nd Grader's Tooth Out With Hockey Stick After He Didn't 'Place it on Pile as Directed'
She was allowed to quietly retire — and the parents are not happy.
A 2nd-grader who apparently did not place his hockey stick correctly back on the pile paid for his “perceived disregard” — with a tooth.
Disturbing surveillance footage shot at Princeton Primary School in Minnesota shows a teacher throwing the hockey stick at the 8-year-old’s face, smashing him in the mouth.
Easton Johnson’s parents families weren’t even notified about the incident — and the only internal communication from the school was congratulating the PE teacher Kim Neubauer on her retirement… which she took very shortly afterward.
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In the video, the children are seen returning hockey sticks in a pile after practice in the gym, which Easton appears to do. But Neubauer, who has taught for 27-years, doesn’t seem to like how he did it — so picks it up and flings it straight into his face, knocking out his tooth.
One little girl who witnessed it even puts her hand to her mouth in shock. The teacher appears not to react at all.
Clutching his bloodied mouth with one hand, the child retrieves the stick from the ground and walks it back over.
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“The more I watch it, it’s just sad. She’s within five feet and she didn’t even hesitate,” the boy’s dad Lance told Fox9. “She just grabbed it and threw it with force, like she was intentionally trying to hurt him.”
Easton’s mom Jodi said he son is now anxious about returning to school.
“He just finished second grade, he’ll be going into third grade; it’s a new building, it’s a new school,” she said. “He’s been asking me, ‘Do they have gym class? What do they teach? who’s their gym teacher? What do they do?'”
Princeton Public Schools told the outlet the teacher was placed on unpaid leave within 11 days of the incident, and resigned shortly after that.
But the only mention of her departure was a since-deleted Facebook post congratulating her on her retirement — a post Superintendent Ben Barton later apologized for, claiming he was unaware of it.
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The parents said they were only going public with the March 28 incident now because of lack of communication from the school district.
“What do you mean ‘there has to be an investigation’, the teacher should just be immediately fired, right there on the spot,” Lance said.
“If you know she did wrong, it’s gotta be a work policy. You hurt a kid, you don’t work there.”
In May, the family received a letter from the Minnesota Department of Education. informing them it had investigated the incident and concluded that it was not accidental, and that Easton was “maltreated due to physical abuse”.
“Physical abuse includes the use of corporal punishment when used to reform, or as a penalty for, unacceptable student conduct,” the letter stated, quoting Minnesota law. “Corporal punishment is conduct involving ‘hitting or spanking a person with or without an object; or unreasonable physical force that causes bodily harm or substantial emotional harm.”
It says evidence shows teachers actions were in response to Easton’s “perceived disregard for placing the hockey stick on the pile” as she had directed; and that while she “may not have intended to harm” him, it still classed as corporal punishment.
The letter also said that Princeton Police had declined to investigate — which Easton’s parents are not happy about.
“No parent should have to deal with this,” Lance said. “Teachers have a job, to teach kids. They should never lose their temper. It’s inexcusable.”
Superintendent Barton told the outlet in an email “the district does not condone or tolerate any form of inappropriate conduct by staff. I share frustrations about the incident that occurred. Although the district promptly investigated and took appropriate action, I recognize that such action does not change the fact that the incident occurred.”
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