Students at Jefferson High School in Michigan are pushing school officials to reinstate a music teacher that was placed on administrative leave for taping a female student’s ankles to her chair.
Brian Sullivan is accused of taping the girl’s ankles to “encourage proper posture required when playing an instrument.”
Debbie Barron, the mother of one of Sullivan’s students, told reporters that “If it was my daughter, I’d be upset, of course. You just can’t do that kind of stuff to kids anymore. But I don’t think he should lose his job.”
According to media reports, the students want Sullivan back because the band teacher was supposed to accompany the class on a trip to Florida where the class is scheduled to perform at Disney World.
“The kids have worked very hard for this trip all year,” said Barron, who also raises money for the band. “The kids have earned this.”
School superintendent Craig Haugen has stated that Sullivan will remain on leave while the complaint is investigated. Haugen released a statement saying “The district is in the process of collecting information regarding the details to resolve the issue in a timely manner. The teacher is on paid administrative leave and may not have contact with any students in any manner or be on Jefferson Schools’ property.”
“The safety and well-being of all of our students at Jefferson Schools is our top priority and we will do all we can to ensure that a safe, supportive learning environment is maintained at all times for all students,” Haugen added.