PINECREST, FLA. (WSVN) - Video of two students fighting at Miami Palmetto Senior High School has parents questioning the school’s handling of the situation.
The cell phone video shows two students punching each other in the head in the middle of a classroom at Palmetto. Several students can be seen standing near the brawl, but in the background, the teacher seemingly makes no attempt to break up the fight. However, according to the Miami-Dade School Board, he did call for help.
“Oh, my God, I don’t believe that,” said Ximena Pariz, a parent whose child attends the school. “It’s very hard, very hard.”
The 49-second video ends with one of the boys lifting the other up, then slamming him down on the floor.
Marietta Verde, a mother of a Palmetto student, told 7News she was disappointed that the teacher didn’t do more.
“The school emphasizes so much about structure, and I don’t see that at all here,” Verde said. “There was an adult on site, so something has to be done … I was concerned with the two kids that were fighting and what I was really upset about was how the teacher just sat there or stood there and watched.”
Sarah Jean-Loeins, a student at the school, said the teacher could’ve done more.
“I think the situation can be avoided,” Jean-Loeins said. “It wasn’t wise for the teacher to stand there.”
“Out of nowhere, they just start talking,” said student Belen Roca. “They started arguing and screaming at each other. They just started swinging at each other.”
Another student, Maurishae McCuller, said more than fists were flying. “I heard one of them threw a vase at the other one,” she said.
Roca believes the teacher did the right thing by not interfering. “He’s just a teacher,” she said. “He can’t really go in there because they were really going at it. It wasn’t really his fault, so he couldn’t stop it.”
In a statement, Miami-Dade Schools spokesperson Daisy Gonzalez-Diego said, “While the teacher immediately requested assistance through the classroom’s emergency call button, we are investigating the incident to determine if every reasonable intervention was implemented.”
The spokesperson also said that their is no clear-cut policy on how involved a faculty member should get in a fight.
The school board also said it is the responsibility of each teacher to make sure every student in their classroom is safe.
The district went on to say that both students in the fight were mutually complicit, and each one will face disciplinary action.
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