2 Classroom Aides Suspended After Student With Autism Struck in Class, CPS Says - NBC Chicago

2 Classroom Aides Suspended After Student With Autism Struck in Class, CPS Says

CPS investigators said a 7-year-old boy was struck by a first-grade classroom aide in his special education class

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    2 Classroom Aides Suspended After Student With Autism Struck in Class, CPS Says
    NBCChicago.com
    "I believe when I send my kid to school I shouldn't have to search him and make sure he's OK because I'm not there," Holly Cornwell-Vaca said.

    Two classroom aides have been suspended by Chicago Public Schools after an incident last week involving a student with autism, the school district said. 

    CPS investigators said a 7-year-old boy was struck by a first-grade classroom aide on Sept. 19 in his special education class at Hendrick's Elementary Community Academy.

    The student's mother, Holly Cornwell-Vaca, said she was notified days after the incident and was only told that the aide retaliated after being kicked by her son, Paulie.

    "I believe when I send my kid to school I shouldn't have to search him and make sure he's OK because I'm not there," Cornwell-Vaca said.

    Her son, Cornwell-Vaca said, cannot verbally tell her what happened.

    Cornwell-Vaca said the incident happened last Tuesday and the school reached out and notified her on Friday, only telling her that her son kicked a staff member, who apparently retaliated.

    "Someone's going to hit him and you're not going to tell me where, how, who?" Paulie's grandmother, Julie Lustro, said. "You're covering yourself up."

    In a statement, a CPS spokesman said the school district is investigating the incident and takes any allegations of student mistreatment seriously. 

    "Student wellbeing is our top priority, and we take seriously any allegations of student mistreatment," spokesman Michael Passman said. "After the school reported these alarming allegations, the district barred two special education classroom assistants from working in the district and instituted a thorough investigation into the matter."

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