MPS Superintendent 'Deeply, Deeply Concerned' for Students, Staff after Assault at Minneapolis School

May 24, 2018 05:44 PM

The superintendent for Minneapolis Public Schools said he wished for "an immediate recovery" for a teaching assistant following an assault that occurred at Harrison Education Center earlier this week.

Mohammed Dukuly, a teaching assistant at Harrison Education Center, was in critical condition after the assault.

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RELATED: HCMC: Minneapolis Teaching Assistant Remains in Critical Condition Following Alleged Assault 

According to a criminal complaint, 18-year-old Corey David Burfield has been charged with first- and third-degree assault in connection with the incident.

RELATED: Student Charged in Connection to Assault at Minneapolis School

"I'm deeply, deeply concerned for the safety and well-being of all our students and staff in Minneapolis public schools," Minneapolis Public Schools Superintendent Ed Graff said. "This tragic incident involving one of our staff members has had a huge impact on me and our staff and our students."

Graff went on to say a review of resources that provide support within Minneapolis schools, both for staff and students, is necessary.

"It's unfortunate we're having this conversation because of the tragedy that occurred," Graff said. "My thoughts and prayers are with Mr. Dukuly and his family. I really think we need to talk about the needs we have as a community."

RAW VIDEO: MPS Superintendent Discusses Recent Assault at Minneapolis School

According to authorities, the incident happened as the students were transitioning between classes.

Graff called it a critical incident.

“We really do go through a process of evaluating what led up to that, and a lot of times you'll have to look at the individualized education program,” he said. “There's details in there about how they should be supported.”

Graff said those IEP’s can identify triggers that would cause a student to act out. They also outline the support each student needs.

“We’re going to take a look at every incident, every situation, and have our practices in place to support our students,” Graff said.

Harrison Education Center is a Level IV federal setting school, serving anywhere from 30 to 50 children with behavioral, emotional and mental health needs.

The district said students in Levels I-III receive specialized intervention in their general education building. Students in Level IV spend 50 percent or more of their specialized instruction at a separate site.

There are only two level IV facilities in the district, the other is the River Bend Education Center.

Watch the news conference in full below.

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Rebecca Omastiak

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