Mary A. Hastings, a high school teacher from Beaumont, Texas was arrested last week after a video showing her allegedly slapping a student was shared across various social media websites. According to Fox 40 News, the video shows Mary slapping the student repeatedly, mocking him and calling the boy an “idiot a**.” She is also heard saying “because you’re stopping him from graduating you idiot [expletive].” to the boy.
It is unclear who shot the video — however, it seems it was captured by another student who was in the same classroom as the boy being hit. Mary was arrested on Friday, the report said. We have embedded the video showing the incident below.
@pside_prince this. pic.twitter.com/ItIkgq9Pw1
— khay (@khay2you) April 8, 2016
Meanwhile, it has now become clear that the incident took place at the Ozen High School near Beaumont, Texas. School authorities have confirmed that Ms. Hastings was immediately removed from the classroom and placed on administrative leave pending action on her contract, according to a statement issued by them. Authorities from The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office have confirmed that Mary Hastings, was arrested Friday on an assault charge. She posted a $2,500 bond and was released from jail on the misdemeanor assault charge later.
Officials from the Beaumont Independent School District (BISD) have said that they have viewed the video. They added that the conduct of Ms. Hastings was substantiated by them after watching the video.
The statement read:
The Beaumont Independent School District can confirm that an Ozen High School teacher was arrested today for physically assaulting a student. The conduct was substantiated by video footage viewed by BISD police and administration. The District is committed to providing a safe and secure environment for our students. BISD does not condone employees abusing any child and will not tolerate such conduct. The teacher was immediately removed from the classroom and placed on administrative leave pending action on her contract.
Meanwhile, a report by 12News, paints a slightly different picture. The news station has aired an interview with a student named Atyra Deroune who was in the classroom at the time of the incident. Deroune said she is still in shock thinking about the day she saw her math teacher, Mary Hastings, hitting her friend inside their classroom at Ozen High School multiple times. She revealed that the altercation between Ms. Hastings happened in the fourth period when the student seen in the video asked a question regarding his grades.
“He asked Ms.Hastings for the grade or whatever and she went awol and she picked up papers and threw it at him,” said Deroune.
Deroune, who is a sophomore at Ozen High School claims she has never seen Ms. Hastings act in the manner she did that day. Hastings was always described as a “fun” and “cool” teacher.
“She was a cool teacher. She wasn’t always bad but like when was ready to teach us for us to learn, she got serious. She was always a laid back teacher and cool with the kids,” she said.
Reactions have poured in after people watched the video. While most people have criticized the manner in which Ms. Hastings behaved with the child, some others have expressed concern over the manner in which the boy is seen reacting towards her in the video. A commenter said:
“I do not condone what the teacher did but you all MUST understand what a difficult job teachers have these days. I teach at a junior high and let me tell you – the students are rude and very disrespectful to the teachers. There are no consequences for them at school or at home. It is a bad situation. I am certain that this teacher had had enough of the abuse day in and day out. You all have got to understand how this teacher must have felt being treated like that for so long.”
[Image Via Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office]