• Mother takes disabled son out of school after hearing recording of teachers

    By: Alan Cavanna


    MONROE, N.C. - Amy Oster knew something was wrong. In May, she began noticing erratic changes in her son Andrew's behavior when he went to school at Rock Rest Elementary in Monroe.

    The 4-and-a-half-year-old has multiple disabilities and can't speak.

    So Oster took a chance.

    "I armed him with a digital recorder," she said.

    The recorder, hidden in his pocket, rolled the entire day. On the recording, Andrew's teacher and a teacher's aide struggle to move him so he sits with his legs crossed.

    It's something his mother says is painful for him.

    Teacher 1: "This is how we sit on the carpet, oh my gosh.”

    Teacher 2: "Seriously, this really is like a workout."

    Teacher 1: "The thing is, is that he's falling back on purpose."

    Moving his legs into the position is so painful that Andrew starts to cry in the recording.

    Teacher: "Tell him to stop crying!”

    Student: "Stop crying."

    At other points, Andrew is yelled at when he has trouble taking his backpack off.

    At the end of the day, one teacher whispers this:

    Teacher: "Don't come tomorrow, either. Stay at home with your nurse."

    Oster took Andrew out of that school and took the tape to the district.

    A district spokeswoman issued the following statement:

    "We have thoroughly investigated this unfortunate situation and have taken appropriate actions according to our policies. We will also provide additional training for our exceptional children's teachers and assistants to prevent this from happening again."

    The district said the teacher's aide resigned last week.

    The teacher is still employed with the district.

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