Some metro parents are mad after they said a Deer Creek teacher taped a mask to a student's face. But the district tells a different story and insists this was all "playful."
"That's not something you want to see another human being go through," said Andrews James.
His son is an 8th grader at Deer Creek Middle School. James didn't feel comfortable naming the teacher involved but said his son has had issues with masks in that classroom before.
"This teacher with my son had cussed at him and told him to put his effing mask back on," said James.
But just days ago he learned there had been another incident.
"He told me about another student that had had her mask taped fully to her face and was made to sit like that for the rest of the class period," said James.
He said he reported what his son told him to administrators, and he wasn't the only one.
"Just this week one Deer Creek teacher was witnessed taping a mask to a student’s face because they were drinking water in class," said Deer Creek parent Alisa Adamson.
She mentioned the incident during the public comment portion of Monday's school board meeting.
James said the incident actually happened a few weeks ago, but now he and other parents want action and more transparency.
One spoke with News 9 but wanted to remain anonymous.
"We need to know. We have a right to know as parents," they said.
That parent also said she was concerned, moving forward, if their child was in that teacher's classroom in the future.
The district's administration provided a statement confirming the incident did happen but did not say where.
They said the narrative has been inflated and it was a "playful moment between a teacher and a student whose mask kept falling." Administrators said the family involved "wants no part of this narrative or agenda and do not want any action taken."
News 9 asked if there was any kind action taken by the district, but they referred our crew back to their statement.
The statement, in full, is below.
The school was recently made aware of an alleged incident that occurred several weeks prior. Deer Creek appreciates and encourages reporting of concerns. Deer Creek is limited in how it can respond due to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Upon hearing of the alleged incident, a full investigation including multiple conversations with parents and students was immediately conducted. The incident was handled swiftly, appropriately and effectively according to state and federal law and Deer Creek policy. It is important to note that neither the involved child nor the child’s parents brought forward this complaint and furthermore requested no action be taken. This incident was a playful moment between a teacher and a student whose mask kept falling, and involved a small piece of scotch tape placed briefly on the nose as a joke.
The inflated narrative has caused great stress to a child and the child’s family who want no part of this narrative or agenda and do not want any action taken. The families of both the student involved and the student who reported the concern have requested that their privacy be respected. We are very proud of our students and families for sharing their concerns with us to help us continually make our school a safe place to grow and learn.
The number one priority of the board, administrators and staff in Deer Creek is the safety and well-being of our students.