2005-09-23 / Community

Mom Says Dean Roughed Up Her Son

The mother of a 12-year-old student, who sought criminal charges and legal action against a dean at a local school after an alleged corporal punishment incident left her son covered with scratches and bruises, is backing off now that school officials agreed to take action.

Georgina Vazquez, the mother of MS 256 student Thomas Hill, says dean Richard Jenkins crossed the line when he put his hands on her son while trying to remove him from a school bus on September 13. She filed an incident report with the 101 Precinct on Monday.

Vazquez shared with The Wave copies of a school “Crisis Log,” that says her son was physically threatening adults, making serious verbal threats and refused to follow directions prior to the incident.

Thomas Hill, 12, was scratched and bruised in an alleged corporal punishment incident on a school bus.    Thomas Hill, 12, was scratched and bruised in an alleged corporal punishment incident on a school bus. A bus attendant also alleges in a “Misbehavior Report” that Thomas was violent and refused to follow directions. “When I yelled at him to sit in his seat he spanked my wrists,” the attendant wrote.

Vazquez admits her son has behavioral problem – even that he got out of hand that day – but she maintains that Jenkins acted improperly when he physically handled her son.

“This man assaulted my child instead of calling the parent and saying, ‘Your son is having a problem and can’t ride the bus today. You have to pick him up.’

“I’m not trying to bash the school, but I think [Jenkins] should be suspended without pay pending an investigation.”

A letter from the Department of Education’s confidential investigator, Brian Nicholson, to the school’s principal, Oswaldo Roman, indicated that the Office of Special Investigations was indeed looking into the incident. Vazquez told The Wave on Wednesday that she would not seek criminal charges because the DOE had moved to discipline Jenkins in a way she felt is appropriate.

Thomas, who was treated at Peninsula Hospital Center for his injuries, was back in school this week after missing two days of class. He has been relocated to another building to avoid another confrontation with Vazquez and is in a classroom with students below his grade level, according to Vazquez, who has contacted an attorney. Brian Magoolaghan

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