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Eighth Grader Arrested After Allegedly Attacking Teacher

Education

Bowie Middle School in Odessa | Image by Shutterstock

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An eighth-grade student in Odessa was arrested after allegedly attacking a teacher last week at Bowie Middle School. A viral video reportedly shows the student assaulting a teacher over a cell phone dispute. The incident occurred last Wednesday.

School district leaders advocated for more mental health services for pupils in response, though the student has been charged with aggravated assault of a public servant, a first-degree felony, according to Ector County Independent School District (ECISD) spokesperson Mike Adkins.

“This is shocking and terrible, and will not be tolerated,” Adkins said, “We have been dealing with fights and violence recently, and want our community to know [this] behavior is unacceptable, and we will do all we can to prevent it.”

Adkins noted that, in addition to criminal charges, the student also faces disciplinary action through the Student Code of Conduct.

“We have watched violence among children on the rise here, around the state and across the country; we know our children are hurting and need us to address mental health challenges, while we also hold them accountable for their actions,” Adkins said. “Our district will continue to address these concerns with students and families.”

District Superintendent Scott Muri said local students need more help managing their mental health.

“We do not have enough mental health resources to meet the needs of kids and families in this community,” he said, “We’ve brought in teletherapy; our kids now have access to therapists remotely.”

He continued, “These therapists exist in other parts of our state. That is now an opportunity at ECISD, but even with that addition, there still aren’t enough resources for kids and families.”

The ECISD police are now handling the case.

When The Dallas Express reached out to Chief Todd Hiner for an update on the case, he acknowledged that “a pending juvenile petition … has been sent to the juvenile prosecuting attorney,” adding that the case is “not available” to the public.

Last month, mental health professionals testified at a joint hearing of three special Texas House committees regarding the best ways to improve mental health care for students.

“Research shows that when schools fully implement comprehensive school counseling programs, violence is reduced, academic performance rises, and attendance goes up,” Mary Libby, director of counseling and representative of the Texas Counseling Association, told the committees.

She continued, “Students, as well as educators, report feeling much safer at school, and that’s why it’s so important to allow school counselors to spend 100% of their time implementing the school counseling programs on their campuses.”

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Dan
Dan
18 days ago

Cell phones are their drug of choice. It’s turning their brains to mush.

Ange
Ange
Reply to  Dan
18 days ago

I certainly agree and it’s nationwide. I’m currently an educator and see it all the time. Students are mesmerized, hooked on, and almost demonized by constant focus on phones instead of education.
What’s really sad is that parents tend to encourage it, even though that’s probably not their intent. Cell phones should not be allowed in classrooms. Parents are supposed to reach their children via the adm offices at school, not calling them in class on their cell phones. But, it happens even though they know better.

Anna
Anna
18 days ago

Our teachers are not paid enough! They take their life in their hands every single day on their jobs. Take the cell phone away when the student enters the classroom and pick it up as they leave the classroom. They can check for messages between classes! Thank you Madilyn Murray O’Hare for taking prayer out of our schools!!

Diann Videan
Diann Videan
Reply to  Anna
18 days ago

Amen Anna. Seems my school is more interested to keep people in chairs instead for f protecting teachers. I have no idea what these parents are engaging their children about respect for adults. It’s terrible for teacher and absolutely unbearable for substitute teachers.

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