Update: New staff for school with two child abuse cases

According to CNN, the Miramonte Elementary School will be getting a new staff because administrators do not want anymore “surprises” at the school. The school is currently in the middle of two child abuse cases.

The Los Angeles school will be replacing everyone from custodians to teachers. Those who are not fired are expected to undergo special training and resume work at another location.

On top of the new staff, parents also have the option of transferring their children to another elementary school in the area. There are four to choose from, according to the article.

These measures are being taken amidst two child abuse cases involving two of Miramonte Elementary School teachers.

According to the article, “Mark Berndt, 61, was arrested and accused of taking bondage photos of more than two dozen students in his classroom, including some with suspected semen-filled spoons at their mouths.”

“On Friday, a second teacher — 49-year-old Martin Bernard Springer — was arrested for allegedly fondling two young girls in the classroom.”

While I applaud the districts attempt to get safety and security back into the school, I do not think replacing the staff or allowing the child to be sent to another school is enough- or really the answer at all.  It is easy to get new staff and new teachers or move a child to another school; however, it is not as simple to make parents feel safe and comfortable about allowing their child to go to school. Parents are angry and nervous for their children- and rightfully so. A safe haven for children has been proven to be anything but that, and that is disheartening to many. The district needs to take measures, like screening teachers or creating programs that help children understand what is “wrong” behavior coming from a teacher. The district needs to provide some sort of reassurance to the parents that goes beyond replacing the staff or transferring their child to another school, because who is to say that some of these teachers are not like the last?




About Haley Behre

I graduated from Syracuse University in December 2011 with majors in newspaper journalism and women and gender studies. Using these majors, I aspire to become a journalist who writes about human rights issues. I have held internships at the Syracuse New Times, Dash Media PR Firm, Syracuse Post-Standard and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. I also had an internship at the Not For Sale Campaign Syracuse chapter, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to eradicating human trafficking. I was born in Seoul, Korea on September 30, 1990 and moved to the United States before I was one year old. When I was 8, my family and I moved to Norwich, England for three years. While I was here I was immersed into a new culture and got to experience many things other children my age do not get to. Over the three years, I visited Ireland, France and the Netherlands several times, and Belgium, Wales and Sweden once. In the winter of 2010, I got an amazing opportunity to visit Kenya for a month. This was by far the single most eye-opening experience of my life thus far. The natural beauty of the landscape and its people do not compare to anything I have seen. I currently intern for the Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press in the hopes of getting a full-time job at a newspaper or non-profit after.
This entry was posted in United States and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s