Teacher Throws Little Girl’s Shoes in Trash to Teach Her a Lesson

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In order to teach a fidgety six-year-old a lesson, a South Carolina teacher allegedly took the little girl’s shoes and threw them in the trash. It’s tough to think of what lesson she might have been trying to teach. How to meet frustration with calmness and grace? Or maybe just how to be shitty?

According to WSPA News, six-year-old Taraji Edwards was reportedly fidgeting with the strap on her sandals in class. The strap on the shoe was bothering her, and the teacher told her several times to leave it alone and pay attention, but she didn’t. That would be frustrating to a teacher, but the teacher’s response was pretty out there. The teacher reportedly took Taraji’s shoes off and threw them in the garbage in front of the class. Then Taraji was made to walk around barefoot for a while before the teacher told her to go fish her shoes out of the garbage and put the back on.

That’s a pretty weird thing to do to a six-year-old. Even taking the shoes away so she could concentrate might make sense, but throwing them in the garbage is just weird and vindictive. Putting the shoes in the garbage didn’t add anything to the experience but humiliation, and it seems like that’s what it was designed to do, especially when Taraji was told to go fish the shoes out of the garbage and put them back on her feet.

Taraji’s parents did not find out about this until the following day. When her mother was getting her ready for school and went to put the shoes on her, Taraji burst out crying and said she didn’t want to wear the sandals. When her mother asked what was wrong with the sandals, Taraji told the story. Her mother was pissed.

Demeaning and humiliating children is a terrible way to teach a lesson. Embarrassing a kid just makes them feel insecure and afraid. Teachers are supposed to help educate children and help them grow into good adults. You don’t do that by publicly degrading six-year-olds.

In a conversation with the principal and the teacher, the teacher reportedly corroborated Taraji’s account of the incident. She said she did it because Taraji wasn’t listening, but she does not seem to think it was wrong to have done so. The school district, on the other hand, says it’s investigating the appropriateness of the punishment.

“Greenville County Schools is taking this family’s concerns very seriously. The district does not tolerate embarrassment or humiliation as a form of punishment. This matter is being thoroughly investigated by Bryson Elementary and by district administrators.  The investigation is not yet complete. As this is a personnel matter, Greenville County Schools cannot release the teacher’s name or the disciplinary action taken, if the investigation determines that discipline is warranted.”

Taraji’s family is reportedly considering enrolling her in private school after this incident and has started a GoFundMe to help pay for it. That might be a bit of an extreme reaction, and private schools have shitty teachers too, but it’s no wonder Taraji’s parents are upset about this incident. Discipline for the teacher does seem warranted, if just to hammer home the fact that humiliation is not a teaching tool.

H/T Jezebel