Parents outraged after video shows teacher shoving, berating son at CMS elementary school

The parents claim the video shows an incident involving their son at Ashley Park Elementary School.
The parents claim that their 11-year-old son was shoved on Tuesday afternoon, but they weren’t aware of the video until yesterday.
Published: Feb. 9, 2023 at 4:07 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - A pair of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools parents are outraged after seeing a recent video that appears to show their child being physically and verbally assaulted by an Ashley Park Elementary School teacher.

Now, those parents are speaking out.

In an interview with WBTV, they said what the video shows is simply unacceptable in any setting, but especially at school, where they said kids are supposed to feel safe.

The parents claim that their 11-year-old son was shoved on Tuesday afternoon, but they weren’t aware of the video until yesterday.

Cortney Pickett, the boy’s mother, said she was horrified by what she saw.

“I feel helpless,” she said when talking about her reaction to the video. “I feel helpless as a mother. That my son came into the house, and didn’t feel like he could talk to me. I feel helpless.”

Pickett also said she feels betrayed by the one place where her son was supposed to feel safe.

“I work hard to make sure my son feels safe,” she said. “And the one place I thought I could keep him in to be safe, they let me down. I’m hurt.”

At one point in the video, the teacher can be heard asking the student if “men in your family put their hands on women,” and does “your dad beat your mom?” His parents said that part of the video was especially hurtful to watch.

“I don’t know whatever movies she’s watching, whatever music she listens to, whatever gives her this attitude that Black men, we don’t care about our kids, that’s false,” father Deon Franklin said.

Franklin said his son, who is normally a happy, outgoing child, hasn’t been the same at home, or at school.

“He don’t even sound the same,” Franklin said. “He’s distant. He doesn’t have that excitement in his voice right now. You can tell he’s hurt by this.”

CMS has confirmed that the teacher in question has been suspended with pay, but his parents question if any action would have been taken if not for the video being shared.

“If that video didn’t come out, it was her word against his,” Pickett said. “Because what she said did not match the story of what my son said.”

While the teacher’s outcome remains to be seen, the boy’s parents said they will continue to worry about him and his well-being.

“Where’s my son safe at?” his mother asked. “He’s not safe in a church, he’s not safe at school. So I’m traumatize because I don’t know, how can I make him feel safe?”

Editor’s Note: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that a CMS board meeting was held to address the teacher’s behavior.

Related: Charlotte school employee charged with inappropriately touching student