A video showing explosive interactions with special needs students is causing outrage towards an Atlanta Public School. The video shows two teacher’s aides allegedly beating and attacking students in a special needs class at Harper-Archer Middle School.
One of the teacher aides in the video, Oliver Coleman, has been fired and faces cruelty to children and battery charges. The other educator, Keisha Smith, was placed on administrative leave, but is still being paid by the school.
Both aides are denying their involvement with the incident.
“I would not allow a student to be beaten or mistreated and it's not in my character,” said Smith in an APS statement. “This is just ridiculous,” said children’s attorney Terrance Madden. “When you're talking about a child who cannot speak for himself, a child who is autistic, a child who is operating between the 6th and 8 age level, that is his mentality. A child who is special needs and placed in that class specifically because he is special needs and a child that is subject to seizures.”
Through a statement the APS said that they regret all that has happened and that they will be investigating further into the incident.