Ann Arbor schools superintendent given pre-termination notice following bus incident

Ann Arbor Public Schools Board of Education voted Monday to give notice to their superintendent that she could soon be fired, according to WXYZ-TV (Channel 7).The notice comes after a video surfaced that shows a troubling incident: an Ann Arbor schools special-education bus aide slapping and restraining a 7-year-old boy with autism, who screams and attempts to break free as the aide assaults him.

Jaime Nelson, the boy’s mother, says her second grade son was placed on the bus after Nelson fought to get him into the special-needs program at Carpenter Elementary School.Now Nelson is suing the school, the school’s principal and the bus company as a result of the incident, which she says she was unaware of for five weeks, claiming the school hid the situation from her.

Nearly 100 other parents have also decided to take action after hearing of the incident, by sending a letter to Ann Arbor schools Superintendent Jeanice Kerr Swift, demanding her resignation.’Help!

Help!’: How Ann Arbor schools allegedly covered up autistic boy’s bus assaultThe letter was a topic of discussion at Monday night’s Ann Arbor schools board meeting, in which the board voted to give Swift a notice of pre-termination as required by her contract, while also agreeing to allow Swift to negotiate with the district’s lawyer.

Both motions passed by a 4-3 vote, with Board President Rima Mohammad voicing concern over the possible, more deep-rooted issues within the district.Parents who spoke at the board meeting alleged the school knew about the bus assault incident but failed to properly respond, which then prompted the urging of Swift’s termination.

The letter sent to Swift also alleged many of the families of children with disabilities have not “felt safe in (the) district for some time” and also cited a “racially hostile” school environment and a “lack of leadership in addressing antisemitic incidents.”Seclusion and restraint: DOJ, others investigating Montcalm school district over use of seclusion and restraintSwift, who was voted in as AAPS superintendent in August 2013, said she hoped to help facilitate any changes in leadership, and apologized for the bus assault.“I will be dedicated to moving forward from this evening to a strong transition,” Swift said at the Monday board meeting.

“This is what we owe our team, our students and our families.”Some former school board trustees argued Swift shouldn’t be terminated.

As of Friday, no official decision had been made.This article originally appeared on Detroit Free Press: Ann Arbor Public Schools superintendent given pre-termination notice View comments


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