Hidden Camera Captures Teacher’s Aides Abusing Special Needs Students

A Harper-Archer Middle School teacher’s hidden camera caught two teacher’s aides assaulting special needs students.

ATLANTA – Two Harper-Archer Middle School special education teacher’s aides were caught assaulting students after a teacher placed hidden cameras in a special needs classroom.

The teacher, referred to as Ms. “J”, said she installed the hidden cameras in her classroom after school personnel and district officials refused to believe that the aides were mistreating students. The students are non-verbal, meaning that cannot speak or write or tell anyone what’s happening to them, WXIA reports.

Video footage captured Alger Coleman, a behavior specialist, hit one of the students and then putting him in a wrestling chokehold.

Coleman, who was fired from the district, was arrested and faces child cruelty and simple battery charges.

Surveillance footage also shows paraprofessional Keisha Smith assaulting an 11-year-old autistic student. Smith has not been charged by police; however, Atlanta Public Schools (APS) has reassigned her pending a disciplinary hearing, WSBTV.com reports.

Ms. J voluntarily left APS following the incident. She believes that the district needs to provide better training for staff members to prevent similar events from occurring again.

Representatives for APS said that student safety and security remain a top priority and that it is taking all complains seriously.

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