Texas district fires teachers’ aides who watched student with autism get attacked

Aldine ISD: ‘This incident should not have occurred’

Special needs student beat at Jones Middle School

Three teachers’ aides who allegedly stood by and watched a student with autism get attacked by another student are no longer with a Houston-area school district, officials said.

Aldine ISD said, “the District no longer employs the aides present during the incident” that took place on Jan. 25 at Jones Middle School, according to a statement released to KPRC, KSAT’s sister station in Houston.

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The station reported that an 11-year-old boy named Sekai was attacked by a student as they were leaving a P.E. class.

A video shows the boy getting pushed to the ground and then punched by a student, KPRC reported. As the boy appears to crawl, the student starts to kick him.

Sekai has autism, is non-verbal and has an intellectual disability. Aldine ISD said the other student involved also has special needs.

Veda Cavitt, the grandmother of Sekai, urged the district to fire the employees because the attack lasted several seconds before they intervened.

“I need them removed,” Cavitt said. “I need them removed. They serve no purpose here... They cannot do their job.”

The district said employees receive training for “nonviolent crisis intervention” at the beginning of every school year. They will reinforce the training during the remainder of the school year, the district said.

Read the full statement below.

The incident at Jones Middle School between two special needs students on January 25 is sad and deeply concerning. The district launched an immediate investigation; however, upon further review, the District has taken additional action.

The District no longer employs the aides present during the incident. This incident should not have occurred.

The district trains paraprofessionals in nonviolent crisis intervention techniques at the beginning of each school year, and will reinforce that training during the remainder of this year. As such, the district expects everyone to conduct themselves in a manner that demonstrates the proper regard for others and does not tolerate behavior that infringes on the safety and emotional well-being of any student or staff member.

Our district leaders will continue to work together to find solutions which provide a safe, healthy and nurturing learning environment in our schools in order to support academic achievement, respectful interactions and engagement.”

About the Author:

Rebecca Salinas has worked in digital news for more than 10 years and joined KSAT in 2019. She reports on a variety of topics for KSAT 12 News.