ELIZABETH, N.J. (PIX11) – An elementary school substitute teacher has been suspended after a 9-year-old girl accused the educator of taping her mouth and the mouths of her friends shut while the class played a “quiet game.”
The student told PIX11 News Friday morning that she and her friends were talking when they were supposed to silent. That’s when a substitute teacher allegedly covered her mouth, up to her nose, in tape, making it difficult for the third grader to breathe.
Four other students’ mouths were taped, the school said citing an investigation in the allegations.
“We kept talking too much. She got very frustrated then she called on me and four students to tape (our) mouths,” student Angelique Correa Henderson told PIX11 News Friday.
Henderson said the teacher used tape to cover the students’ mouths, adding that “it hurt.” The little girl said the teacher used “duct tape and some kind of clear tape,” but the school refutes that, saying the incident involved minimally adhesive hobby tape.
The alleged incident happened May 28 at Winfield Scott School No. 2 on Madison Avenue in Elizabeth, N.J.
A parent reported it to the students’ usual teacher over the weekend. When the teacher, who was absent the day of the incident, returned to class Monday, she told school administrators.
The unidentified substitute teacher, who does not have a history of reported problems with students or parents, is no longer working at Winfield Scott, the school said.
The school is investigating the case. Police in Elizabeth and the New Jersey Division of Child Protection and Permanency are also looking into the allegations.