Chancellor Kaya Henderson said that the student involved in an assault on a teacher last month at Spingarn High School was not, as Washington Teachers’ Union President Nathan Saunders asserted, receiving special education services.
In a June 28 letter to Saunders, Henderson said an attorney for the student’s parent “has asked us to consider whether she might be eligible for services and we are doing so.”
Saunders alleged this month that the teacher was so severely beaten by the student, newly arrived from a residential treatment facility, that she would require facial reconstruction. He contended that teacher safety has been compromised by the District’s efforts to “reintegrate” special education students into city schools without informing educators.
Spingarn Principal Gary Washington challenged Saunders’s account, saying that the teacher’s injuries were not that severe, and that she had spoken to the student inappropriately prior to the attack. Washington said this by no means justified the attack, but indicated poor judgment on the teacher’s part.
Henderson said teacher security was “of great concern” but that she could not address specifics of the Spingarn incident because it is the subject of pending litigation. She also rejected Saunders’s request for a list of schools where special education students had been reintegrated.
“At this time, DCPS does not have a list of schools where special education students have been ‘reintegrated,’ and creating such a list ... would likely violate students’ privacy rights,” she wrote.