ANTIOCH, CA (KRON) – An outburst caught on a viral video cost a Contra Costa County, CA substitute teacher his job.
In the video, he is seen losing his temper at students inside the classroom over missing school supplies. The exclusive video was first shown Tuesday night on KRON News at 8 p.m. Many viewers took to social media, expressing their viewpoints on both sides of the issue. Some said the students, and not the teacher, are to blame for the behavior.
The video was taken Monday afternoon in the sixth-grade classroom at Antioch Middle School. On Wednesday, KRON spoke with the Antioch school board about what happened and what is being done in response. This substitute teacher started screaming, apparently over a missing box of rubber bands, according to the video. And he is seen demanding that a student must go through the trash to get them. It is possible the kids were wearing the rubber bands like bracelets.
But “that does not give any teacher the excuse to go ballistic,” school board vice president Walter Ruehlig said.
Ruehlig said the teacher’s behavior was extreme. A school employee gave KRON the video and said teachers are frustrated by a lack of discipline at the middle school. Ruehlig defended the district’s students.
“Nothing out of the ordinary was done by the kids,” he said. “I was actually marveled that the composure of the kids that they…put up with the very erratic behavior. Which is inexcusable.”
Parents who saw the video said they worry about what this outburst teaches students.
“You can’t treat the students like that,” parent Amalia Garcia said. “He has to be professional for his job,” she said.
The substitute has been let go. And the school district is investigating if there were other times this teacher got so agitated that he lost his composure.
“I don’t know where he got training. He should have a good, hard look at the kind of training he got to be dealing with children,” Ruehlig said.
KRON also found out police were notified about what happened. The district is now discussing better training and a better vetting process for hiring substitutes. The Antioch Unified School District issued the following statement on the incident Tuesday:
“Late yesterday, administration at Antioch Middle School learned that a substitute teacher had lost his temper with students in a sixth grade classroom. Staff took immediate and decisive steps to ensure that the substitute was removed from the classroom and the campus. Police were immediately notified and students in the classroom will receive counseling as needed. The actions of this individual in no way reflect the values of our schools or our District. We take all instances of student safety seriously and will ensure that appropriate and conclusive steps are taken as determined by the outcome of the investigation.”
The parents of the student who was singled out in the video were contacted about the incident.