Mother says 12-year-old son suffered burns following form of discipline during P.E. class

A mother said her 12-year-old son suffered blisters and burns following a physical education teacher’s form of discipline at Anthony Aguirre Junior High School earlier this week.

“When I saw him, he had a big blister here, blisters forming on the palm,” said Wendy Alvarez.

Alvarez said her son and other boys were outside on a hot Monday for P.E. class when the teacher made them do bear crawls, an exercise that involves placing hands on the ground, as discipline for heading under the bleachers and not taking part in other activities.

“I guess him and his friends were like, ‘Well, it’s too hot out here,’” Alvarez said. “He said, ‘We said let’s go get into some shade. Let’s go look for shade.’”

Temperatures in the Houston area reached into the upper 80′s and low 90′s on Monday.

Alvarez said the discipline was carried out on the hot track and her son later told her that his hands felt like they were on fire.

“I took him to the ER and they said it was second-degree burns and they told me how to take care of the burns on his hands,” she said.

Channelview ISD said the physical education teacher disciplined four students and, given the conditions outside, the students involved sustained “non-life-threatening heat-related injuries.”

The school district said the incident is under investigation writing in a statement, “Channelview ISD does not condone aversive discipline techniques that may cause physical pain to a student in any way.”

“I feel like the punishment was too harsh,” Alvarez said. “I’m all up for discipline, disciplining the kids, but not like that.”

Alvarez said her son is doing better but doesn’t want to go back to P.E. class.

The school district said the physical education teacher has been removed from the classroom and is on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.


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