A New York teacher was put on paid leave indefinitely for a punishment my first-grade teacher threatened: Washing out a profane boy’s mouth with soap and water.
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) Elementary school teacher Lori Thomas was placed on paid leave for dishing out some old-fashioned discipline washing a boy’s mouth out with a dab of soap after he shouted an obscenity at a classmate.
More than three months later, she’s still out of the classroom. Apparently, the district can’t figure out what to do about her.
Thomas, 48, who has taught for six years at inner-city School 22, said she was stunned when a 10-year-old pupil directed “a vile, very nasty sexual reference” at a girl as third-graders shuffled back into class from a playground break in March.
The boy had frequently been sent home for unruly behavior. Minutes earlier, he tried without success to pick a fight with another boy, Thomas said. But rather than let him get his way and earn another one-week suspension, Thomas decided to try something her mother taught her.
“Old-fashioned ways work,” she said unapologetically.
She took the boy to the nurse’s office, she said, “put a drop of soap of his lower lip, washed it out immediately and told him I never wanted to hear filth like that coming out of his mouth again.”
Parents and students did not complain, but she got into trouble anyhow.