5th grader suspended after recording teacher taunting student

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FORT PIERCE, Fla. — A Florida elementary student was suspended from school after she recorded audio of a teacher taunting a student during class.

Brianna Cooper, a fifth-grader at Fort Pierce Elementary School, recorded her teacher telling a classmate, “Don’t let the size fool you. I will drop you.”

Later in the recording, the teacher can be heard telling the student, “..biggest kid in the fifth grade and you acting like the smallest one.”

Cooper turned over the audio to school officials and the teacher was later fired, according to WPTV. However, Brianna was suspended from school for five days because the recording was “illegal.”

The school determined she obtained the recording illegally because it was made without the teacher’s knowledge and violated the teacher’s expectation of privacy.

The Florida law states:

Florida makes it a crime to intercept or record a “wire, oral, or electronic communication” in Florida, unless all parties to the communication consent. Florida law makes an exception for in-person communications when the parties do not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in the conversation, such as when they are engaged in conversation in a public place where they might reasonably be overheard.

While school administrators say the teacher had an expectation of privacy, Brianna’s mom says this is not the case in a room full of students.

Brianna’s mother has asked the school to rescind the suspension and have it permanently removed from record.

The school issued a statement on the teacher:

The staff at Sam Gaines Academy investigated the incident involving unprofessional behavior by the teacher and took swift, appropriate action.  The teacher was dismissed and no longer works for the school system.

The school has not commented on the suspension of the student.

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  • George

    This kid deserves an award for being brave enough to record and stand up to this garbage. Suspending this girl just shows the other students they shouldn’t stand up against bullies. Any teacher that bullies a kid should be in prison. Where are the criminal charges?

  • Kesha

    This and more happens in Milwaukee public schiols all the time. Kids being berated. Kids being assaulted by staff, then suspended so that their allegations will be discredited. ALL the time.

  • staticphear

    The kid should be protected by the whistle blower law if the school is going to attempt to say a classroom is private. But there is no way anyone would agree that a classroom full of kids is private.

  • Priscilla

    I was thinking the same thing; wouldn’t the exception to the law apply in this case? And why suspend the girl for something you, as the school district, used to fire this teacher?

  • ltdarkstar

    Oh ya another Democratic-run school with a bunch of try-hards at the helm. The parents of the suspended girl would be best off moving her to a private school, she’ll get a better education anyways and avoid the Democratic brainwashing going on in that place.

  • Mark

    But the Osama, er, ah, Obama Bin Biden administration can wire tap and eavesdrop on anyone, anywhere, anytime they want. The student did the right thing. The teacher did it in front of an entire classroom of students. How do they figure he could expect “privacy?”

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