Parents confront school officials after teacher allegedly grabbed student by throat at Harambee Elementary School

Updated: November 12, 2019 10:08 PM

An elementary school teacher in Maplewood is under investigation for allegedly grabbing a student by his throat, according to a police report, and concerned parents confronted school officials about the incident at a public meeting on Tuesday.

Maplewood Police responded to a complaint at Harambee Elementary School on Oct. 9. The incident report states that a male student was swishing water around in his mouth when his teacher grabbed his throat to make him swallow his water. The report doesn't name the teacher or student.


Harrambee school leaders notified police, and an investigation began. However, the boy's mother said weeks passed before she was made aware of the encounter. 

The mother of the student, along with other concerned parents, confronted Roseville School Board Members during a public meeting Tuesday. The parents represented a handful of elementary school-age kids who had filed abuse complaints. They stood in solidarity in the front row, holding signs calling for action.

Ronald Lindsey said the second grader is his nephew and that he showed up to call out "an attempted cover-up of documented facts, not allegations." Lindsey insisted on receiving a summary of the district's findings and discipline imposed.

Susan Montgomery has a son in the district and has brought her concerns to board members before and did again Tuesday.

"What are you actually doing about staff accountability, school climate, transparency and student safety?" she said. "Our kids can't afford to wait for you any longer,. We need answers as soon as possible."

Maplewood Police confirmed the report has been sent to the Ramsey County Attorney's Office for review of possible criminal charges. 

On Tuesday, the school told KSTP that it did receive a complaint about a teacher and it does have an investigation pending. While the investigation is pending, the school said it's limited in what information is public, but did say the teacher has not been in the classroom since.

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KSTP & Beth McDonough

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