Mom Says Teacher Hit Kindergartner & Tried to Bribe Her to Keep Quiet With LOL Doll

Hailey Turner
Fox 13

The mother of a Memphis, Tennessee, kindergarten student is livid after her daughter's school allegedly failed to reprimand the teacher who "popped" her girl in the face with a ruler. Twenty-three-year-old Ciara Morgan said the school tried to play off her daughter's bruises as an allergic reaction, but when she arrived at the school, her 5-year-old told her a different version of events -- one that even involved a bribe from the educator in exchange for the kindergartner's silence. 

  • The incident happened in January, when the 5-year-old told her mother that the "allergic reaction" around her eye was actually a bruise.

    According to Yahoo, 5-year-old Hailey Turner had actually been in her Cummings Elementary School classroom when her teacher maliciously smacked her in the face with the ruler. The girl later explained to her mother that the cause of the attack was that she had simply told her teacher, Tierra Lewis, that another student was still on the classroom computers after the teacher had asked them to stop using them -- a very common thing for young children to do when they think someone is breaking the rules.

    For some reason, Lewis allegedly had an extreme reaction to the comment. "She said the teacher reached into her desk, pulled out a ruler, walked over to her and told her ‘No tattletaling’ and popped her,” Morgan told  Fox 13. Tuner then spent the rest of the day with a bright, red, bruise blossoming around her eye.

    It was only when Morgan went to pick up her daughter at school that the bruise was called into question. Morgan told Yahoo that her daughter's aunt had been notified by the school that Turner was "having an allergic reaction.” But when Morgan went to get her, Turner told her that Lewis "had hit her with a ruler and told her not to tell anyone,” Morgan said. “She said that her teacher said she will bring her a ‘LOL Doll’ if she doesn’t tell anyone what happened.”

    “I actually cried because she had a big bruise around her eye,” Morgan told Fox 13.

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  • Now, Morgan is even more upset because she said the school failed to properly reprimand Lewis and instead, allowed her to continue working at the school.

    As The Daily Beast noted, corporal punishment is not banned in Tennessee schools, but that doesn't mean that Morgan and Turner's father weren't furious at the way the school handled their daughter's case. The parents demanded to see school administrators about the incident, who then helped them call the Memphis Police Department and the Department of Child Services. But things reportedly came to a halt after the school opened up an investigation and couldn't substantiate the young child's claims.

    It was determined that Lewis had hit Turner on the hand to "redirect" her and she was suspended for two weeks. There will also be further investigation by state licensing authorities.

    Lewis returned to the school on February 8 with no warning to Turner's parents, and the girl was then switched out from that classroom with no notice from the district.

    “Since the incident, the only thing the school has done was remove the teacher. Two weeks later they brought her back and removed my daughter from her class,” Morgan told Yahoo. “I was upset! No one contacted me about my daughter being removed from the class or contacted me about them bringing that teacher back to the school," she added. 

    Morgan told Fox 13 that she has recently found out the Tennessee Department of Education has yet to reviewed the file on her daughter's investigation, which makes her question why Lewis has been allowed back in the classroom when the state has yet to review the case.

    Furthermore, the mom said that her daughter's principal has refused to meet with them about the issue. She also received a letter that told her she's no longer allowed on school property. 

  • Frustrated by the lack of action at Turner's school, the girl's parents have decided to transfer their daughter. 

    In a statement given to Fox 13, the Shelby County School District said, “We can confirm this employee was removed from the school and received disciplinary consequences in accordance with board policy.” But apparently it was too little, too late for Morgan and her family. 

    The mom has since moved her daughter to a different school entirely. “My daughter has been withdrawn from that school,” Morgan told Yahoo, “and I want everyone who was involved in this incident to be held accountable for their actions.” 

    The mom told the Daily Beast that the most heat-breaking thing about the incident is that her daughter is blaming herself for getting her teacher in trouble. “She keeps saying, ‘I didn’t want to snitch on her and get her in trouble.’ She felt like she was in the wrong," Morgan said. 

    Thankfully, the mom told KCAL 9 that her daughter has been recovering from her injuries. “She’s better, way better,” she said.

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