WICHITA FALLS, TX - (KAUZ) The Wichita Falls Independent School district is working to assure parents that students are safe at school, after a Zundy Elementary School teacher allegedly used duct tape to keep her students' mouths closed last Thursday.
We have had counselors available there at the school this week,” said Ashley Thomas, Communication Officer for WFISD. “Behavior counselors are there to help kids if they have questions, and just be an extra support for the administrator teams that are already in place.”
This week school officials also sent home more than 700 letters to parents of all Zundy students. The letter explained the incident, and included any contact information they might need. Officials with the district said this was an isolated incident.
“She is no longer in the classroom,” said Thomas. “She is no longer within our schools, not teaching right now.”
However, just because she's out of sight doesn't mean out of mind. The situation is shedding light on district policy. Whether the schools are doing enough to prevent a similar situation from happening.
Right now, teachers are required to read and sign an employee code of conduct sheet every year, but other than that there are not many other programs that focus on student teacher conduct, according to Thomas.
“You know we haven't had to address this,” said Thomas. “Since I've been here, this is the first incident, I know of, that this has happened. I'm not sure if that’s something we would need to put in place.”
The answer to that, could depend on the result of an on-going investigation, including police reports filed by parents of victims.
While the Wichita Falls Police Department couldn’t talk specifically on the case involving the teacher, they said if you ever feel like a teacher, or authority figure crosses a line, they encourage you to file a report.
“That’s the whole point of having the police department and detectives,” said Sergeant Harold McClure. “Then that report goes to them and they begin to investigate it to determine if an offense actually has been committed.”
He said in investigations involving minors, the findings will be taken to the grand jury. From there, they will determine what charges will be faced.