Students rally behind gym teacher caught on camera yelling at student

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HEWLETT, N.Y. — As any student knows at Hewlett High School on Long Island, cell phones are not allowed at any point during the school day.

However, that did not stop one student from recording a three-minute screaming match between a gym teacher and a freshmen student.

It all began last Tuesday, when Chris Passuello requested that a student put his phone away and sit down.

According to others in the class, the student did not follow the teachers request, and a screaming match between the two began.

That's when another student took out her phone and hit record.

"You are trying to bait me into an altercation," shouts Passuello.

The screaming match escalates with the two in each other's faces.

The student yelling, " You don't have to get in my f------ face.  Do not get in my "f------ bubble'"

Passuelo yelled back, "I respectfully asked you to put your phone down.  I respectfully asked you to stop talking, you don't stop."

The fight escalated even further.

The student can be heard on camera calling the teacher the N word, which Cassuello repeats a number of times.

The school district would only say that they are taking this matter seriously, but as for punishment could not comment.

Yet, plenty of students are standing behind the teacher in this case.

Junior Brianna Azimov says that Cassuello was suspended for two weeks, while the student, she claims, is still roaming the halls.

Azimov organized a rally on school grounds today, calling on the school district to reinstate Cassuello, or suspend the student as well.

"He teaches the curriculum and is a mentor," says Azimov. " He teaches life lessons, morals and cares about his students."

"Paz is like a father figure to us," said another student.

In the student handbook, it is a clear violation to use cell phones in the classroom.

We approached the schools principal to find out if the student was still in class or was suspended, but he did not comment.

The school district says it cannot discuss what happens to students or staff.

PIX11 tried to talk to Cassuello, but did not get a response when ringing his doorbell.

Google Map for coordinates 40.643159 by -73.695686.

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