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Kindergarten Teacher Locks Student In Small Room, Forgets About Him

Kindergarten teacher locks student in room

Caldwell, ID — A kindergarten teacher locked a 5-year-old student in a small, dark room by himself at the end of the school day. The teacher left the child there for over an hour, the boy’s father said.

School officials said Friday they were investigating the case after James Cagle said that when he and his wife found their son he was crying and urinated on himself.

“He was scared,” Cagle said. “You know just think about that. A 5-year-old boy.”

Cagle said he and his wife panicked when their son didn’t come home from his morning kindergarten class Wednesday. 45 minutes after he was supposed to be home, the Cagles went to Washington Elementary School to look for him.

Cagle said his wife and a school secretary found the boy crying in the room, where he had been put for about an hour and a half after the teacher put him in there for misbehaving.

“I know that if I locked my child in a room long enough for him to urinate on himself, I’d be going to jail or child protective services would dang sure be here taking him out of my house that night,” Cagle said.

School officials disputed that the door to the room was locked, and said the teacher would have had a key. Assistant District Superintended Monica White also said the door has a large window, which allows light in from the hallway.

The officials did acknowledge, however, that the teacher’s discipline was inappropriate.

The district hasn’t released the teachers name and won’t say if she is still employed at the school.

The room is typically used for tutoring and for emotionally-impaired students when a child needs to be removed for becoming violent.

“What is very regrettable, and the teacher certainly feels awful about this, is the fact that the child was left in there and was, essentially, she had forgotten that she had placed the child in that room,” said Rosandick.

Cagle has met with the school principal, Steve Foley, who agreed to have his son placed in another kindergarten class.

“I’m not saying I want to get her fired. I don’t want to ruin her career,” Cagle said. “But in the very same breath, it’s my kid.”

James Cagle said he has had problems with the school in the past, including incidents where his son was either placed on the wrong bus, or not placed on the bus at all. He said he complained each time, but White said she hadn’t heard the reports. It’s possible school officials did not notify district administrators, she said.

“The last thing we ever want to do is lose a child,” White said.

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Comments

58 Responses to “Kindergarten Teacher Locks Student In Small Room, Forgets About Him”

  1. Kay E Myers

    She should not be a teacher at all, if parents did this they would lose the kid and be in court forever trying to get him back, forgot the kid? She should forget about showing up to teach because she is teaching the WRONG message!

  2. Terri Pryor

    So she had a key..big deal! If anyone would have EVER locked my kids in a room & THEN forgot about them..I would have made damn sure she lost her job(after I beat her azz).

  3. Kathleen Grace

    A child is given over to teachers who are held responsible for their care. The teacher should lose her job, that was highly irresponsible.

  4. Kathy Wyatt

    What right does she have locking a child in a room and forgetting him? For 1 it's kindergarden , if she can't handle children she shouldn't be teaching at all. Does she lock her children in a room and forget them if she has any? She should be treated as any parent would in this situation , charged with child abuse and neglect. Fire her A%$.

  5. Alison Alley

    That's not appropriate period. I do not do that to my own kids, I feel that's abuse . Mental and emotional abuse isjust as bad as physical. So no. If I don't abuse my kids you better hell not. I probably would've lost my temper with the school. That's my baby.

  6. Alysia Rairdan

    That woman needs to be fired! If a parent had done something like that they would be looking at jail time, or at the very least losing that child. A teacher should be held to higher standards, and shouldn't be allowed to keep her job after abusing a child! That is abuse and neglect plain and simple. The school should be punished as well for not immediately terminating that woman, the kids are more important!

  7. Kathy Marie Tolson Cottrell

    Sounds like the school needs a complete make over!

  8. Christina Gedeborg MacGregor

    I'm not defending the teacher, but part of the problem is the public education system. I taught a full-day class of 31 Kindergarteners (without an aid) last year, and I know other teachers who have class sizes BIGGER than that. I had one little girl who liked to play in the bathroom, and I'd have to get the Librarian to help get her out because I could not leave my big class. So for everyone who is so adamant that this teacher is a horrible human being, I want them to try teaching a class that size for a day- ESPECIALLY full of Kindergarteners- and then see how they feel. I think that it may be an eye opener. I honestly believe the teacher made a mistake. Should it cost her her job? Perhaps. But we should all show a little more compassion than judge a situation that we were not a part of.

  9. Christina Gedeborg MacGregor

    I'm not defending the teacher, but part of the problem is the public education system. I taught a full-day class of 31 Kindergarteners (without a teacher's aide) last year, and I know other teachers who have class sizes BIGGER than that. I had one little girl who liked to play in the bathroom, and I'd have to get the Librarian to help get her out because I could not leave my big class. So for everyone who is so adamant that this teacher is a horrible human being, I want them to try teaching a class that size for a day- ESPECIALLY full of Kindergarteners- and then see how they feel. I think that it may be an eye opener. I honestly believe the teacher made a mistake. Should it cost her her job? Perhaps. But we should all show a little more compassion than judge a situation that we were not a part of.

  10. Beverly Durden

    If this were my child or grandchild they would have no need to discipline her at all. Thiis woman has no place in a school. Good thing it wasn't mine.

  11. Teresa Sigler

    Dad, I think you need to change schools. You said they have put your son on the wrong buses and or not at all. Now he has been locked in a darkened room for an hour by himself. I would transfer him ASAP. They already have too many strikes against them!

  12. Marlene Rivera Pabon

    This makes me feel so bad for that little boy..I can feel what he went through, omg! He is only 5yrs. young, and for her to forget about him? Very irresponsible of her..I hope she does not have any children, I can just imagine!

  13. Kel Sing

    You do not lock a 5 yr old up in a room by himself at school. If you're that frazzled as a teacher to actually FORGET you put him there then you shouldn't be there anymore. Yep, she needs to go. Sorry, but that's not just a little mistake. Who does that? Put a misbehaver in the office or the hall. Geeze woman.

  14. Yady Rodriguez

    Hell yea she should be fired but like every school district does they will find a way to cover it up and come up with all kind of excuses I pray she loses her job that is mental abuse n trauma for this little boy

  15. Kel Sing

    Yeah and they make a point about her having a key. Why the need to actually lock the door in the first place? Seriously?

  16. Barbara Ransom

    Ordinarily I'd be among the first to want to End someone for harming a child especially if it's one of mine, they already know what would happen. However my gut tells me that there is more here than we are being told. In all likelihood each of us who've posted our anger over this situation have raised our children in such a way that they would not pose a physical threat to someone. I'd like to know the whole truth of the circumstances surrounding this before coming to a conclusion. I've volunteered in schools where students as young as kindergarten have become violent and posed a threat to others the teachers and administrators are very limited in what they can and cannot do. Fortunately, as a Parent Volunteer I am not and I've taken control of situations, not by harming the child but by giving them some very stern direction and also speaking directly with their parents who have dropped the ball considerably. If this child was a danger to others she was right in separating him, it's unfortunate that she got overwhelmed and forgot about him but kids pee on themselves at school often, most schools have an extra set of clothes for the students for this reason so his peeing on himself is a non-issue. If he was NOT a threat and just being lippy the teacher is in over her head and needs to have additional training or find another job. Before you form a lynch mob ask yourself, "What if this little boy had some type of weapon or decided to poke another student in the eye with a pencil and his victim was your little girl or boy? Would you have preferred him being stuck in another room to prevent your child from being hurt or would you rather have had the teacher overlook the potential for harm to someone else's kid and let things progress?"

  17. Maybe AB

    Yes, she needs to be fired on the spot! No child should be locked in a room of ANY kind for ANY length of time, but especially one so young! We have become a society who are so down on old-fashion spanking that we've gone completely off our rocker in the other direction. There are miles and miles of damage done in disciplining in bizarre ways as this than spanking will EVER cause!

  18. Anonymous

    Poor parenting. Ever been a teacher baby sitting unruly kids? I have. That should teach both the kid and the parents a lesson. Now the little brat may behave.

  19. Rickquette Cain

    I remember my son came home crying because his teacher had our him in a closed closer and I wasn't gone quit until that man was fired putting my baby in a closet… he eventually got fired so no other kids would have to go through that at the school

  20. Joyce Bunch

    What country do we live in? How dare anyone think it's appropriate to lock a child any where and forget about them. Talk about child abuse!

  21. Michelle Harris

    what is WRONG with people????? this guy is being WAY more forgiving than i would be.

  22. Christina Gedeborg MacGregor

    In no shape or form am I saying that this is okay- it is most definitely NOT. However, I think that there are more issues at fault than this article states. Maybe security at the school should be looked at, as well as how the seclusion rooms are being used (and if they should be used at all in some situations). Also, maybe a list of kids should be brought from the class to the bus driver so that no kids get left behind (that's how my school did it, especially since the Kindergarteners had such differing schedules and needed reminding themselves where to go sometimes). It's horrific that this happened, but the focus should be on the solution so that it never happens again.

  23. Joan Wilcox

    Barbra i would have to agree on some points that the teacher was overwhelmed, most kindergardeners are hyper to begin with heck they are only 5 years old and many people want 4 and 5 year olds to act like little adults, why not use that hyperness to teach them instead of trying to get them to set like they are much older than they are. I feel that we are sending our children to school at a too early of an age they are just babies and we want them to act like they are older, this in itself is a crime, let them be babies before we send them to school.

  24. Starrlynn Trent

    Who cares if there is more to this story!!! She does not have a right to lock a kid in a dark room! Send him to the principals office and call the parent! Its a damn good thing there wasn't a fire at the school or that little boy would be DEAD!! So u wouldn't care if a teacher locked one of ur children up, alone and scared and then forgot about them? U have issues!

  25. Starrlynn Trent

    Let a teacher lock up one of my kids! Keeping their job would be the least of their worries when I was done with them!! She should go to jail!! This might affect that little boy for years! Make him hate school, mistrust adults and authority! She had no right! He's a kid! She shouldn't be around children ever. Wonder how she punishes her kids?

  26. Margaret King

    No she shouldn't go to jail. She made a mistake. When I went to school my teachers were tough; tape over the mouth for talking, sitting in the janitors closet for an hour, standing in the corner with your nose in a circle and at the end of the day your parent got called. Tell you what, i learned how to behave very quickly and learned my boundaries.

  27. Linda Rasmussen

    I realize that some children need extra attention and may have become violent. However, the proper way to handle it is get the child to the principal's office and call the parents–NOT lock him in a room and THEN FORGET him.. If she is so overwhelmed that she cannot follow these steps, then she needs to find another job–one not around children.

  28. Margaret King

    As I was going to say, those were not mistakes. And my self-esteem did not suffer one bit. The kid may have been disruptive and she may have intended a time out, got distracted and accidently forgot he was in there. Teachers are human and make mistakes too. However, if there have been many other complaints about this teacher then an investigation is warranted. If this is the only complaint then I would chalk it up to forgetfulness and tell her to be more careful.

  29. Kelly Miller

    She should be fired!! That is not an appropriate punishment for a 5 yr old!! Not to mention she forgot! What if there was a fire or an emergency? Then he is humiliated by peeing himself!! WTH?? She would no longer be my child's teacher!! In fact around here they would call that child abuse!!! Think she needs to be taught a lesson!!!

  30. Robin Doronn

    Tis teacher should not ever be allowed to be in charge of so much as a potted plant ever again. Sounds like some serious problems even before the locked up and forgot about incident, I would pull my children out when they put him on the wrong bus, or no bus, this is not acceptable

  31. Sparki Beltran

    I went through this same crap with a teacher when my son was in 1st grade…. he ran away from school and went home, climbed through the kitchen window and was there when his sister got home. I wanted her fired. She was young and treated my son like crap and all he was trying to do was discipline him. I told her right to her face she was never to touch, speak or discipline my son again and if I had my way she would never teach again. He was put in another class.

  32. Sparki Beltran

    I went through this same crap with a teacher when my son was in 1st grade…. he ran away from school and went home, climbed through the kitchen window and was there when his sister got home. I wanted her fired. She was young and treated my son like crap and all he was trying to do was please her. I told her right to her face she was never to touch, speak or discipline my son again and if I had my way she would never teach again. He was put in another class.

  33. Kathee Alexander McCarl

    This is NOT how an educator treats her students. There is NO reason to put a 5 year old in a locked room! I know that a lot of kids today are not properly disciplined by stupid parents, but unless this kid was wielding a knife and threatening to kill her, she had no business doing that to a child. She is in the wrong profession.

  34. Kalena Kenny

    Seems very Irresponsible of the entire school and imagine the district making excuses! She should be fired, at the most ” time out” should be is 5 minutes

  35. Fred C Ellenburg

    We first need to get ALL of the facts before having a knee jerk reaction. This is the former school principal in me speaking.

  36. Paula Qualls Gurley

    Christina Gedeborg MacGregor ……My daughter is a kindergarten teacher. She is expected to deal perfectly with every child, to teach them all everything their parents are too busy or lazy to teach them, make the parents and kids feel good about themselves, stop child abuse without every calling DHS, and leap tall buildings in a single bound. Most of these idiots didn't even bother to thoroughly read the article. I completely agree with what you have posted……..but people all want to blame and act superior……not to understand the problem and come up with a solution. Just fire her and hire someone else………….and they wonder why so few people go into teaching.

  37. Carole Mitchell Lewis

    I won't say that she should go to jail, but she should definitely be fired. What she did is totally a unacceptable action by a school teacher, especially one who teaches kindergarten. An experience like that could keep a child from ever wanting to go to school again.

  38. Shareese Dixon

    Once the principal called my kid in the office with an angry mother of a student who had called me cell phone the night before cussing and calling me bitches because her son took my daughters flute as she got off the bus. He held it to the window as the bus drove off as he called my daughters name. When we called the boy he claimed to not have the instrument but my kid seen him with it. I go to the house with the police because I am considering it stolen at this point. The mom did not like it and called me that night cursing. I called the Board of Ed on the principal for calling my kid in the office with an angry parent. My kid was so scared that she had to call me as she was all shaken up. The principal did not return the next year – she had been doing everything wrong all year long!

  39. Lisa Scribner Suarez

    at the very least she should go to jail to see how it feels to be locked up. That was a horrible thing to do and she is very lucky that was'nt my child. I would follow her the rest of her life making it miserable!

  40. Robert Cowan

    I think that in addition to losing her job she should be court ordered to spend an hour and a half locked in a dark room with the boys mother or father with no-one paying much attention to how she looked when she came out!!!!!

  41. Betty Sherlin Schueler

    I understand why people are upset but everyone needs to remember that there is a lot about memory we don't understand. Anyone can have a lapse in memory at the worst time imaginable. I am sure the teacher never meant to leave the boy locked in the room. Removing her as a teacher doesn't help anyone. It does sound like the school needs to put more safeguards in place to make sure this doesn't happen again like a red light, over the outside of the door, to notify people that someone is in the room.

  42. Mandy Sorenson Bernarde

    I don't care she needs to be fired or lock her in a room called jail I agree with the parents saying if it was us wed be in trouble. if she did this to one kid who knows how many else.

  43. Laura Hare

    My Grandson was locked in a dark closet by the teacher. He Is also in Kindergarten. I do Not know what steps to take to have the teacher disciplined for this. He was in a supplies closet.scissors, pencils etc. He was in there for the entire recess. This is an incredible safety hazard. if a fire broke out etc. Can anyone Advise me on this matter?