The superintendent of the Belton Independent School District in Texas, Susan Kincannon, has apologized to an 8-year-old student and his family after the boy was handcuffed during an attempt to restrain him when he had a tantrum as a reaction to medication for his attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, KWTX reports.
“While we are continuing to investigate this incident, I want to apologize to the student and the student’s family. It is not our practice to call the police for unruly elementary students,” the superintendent said in a statement.
According to KWTX, the incident all started when the boy was reprimanded for making fun of students at lunch and was told to move to another table. The child then started to shove trays and throw chairs. He was taken to the school’s office and told to calm down but started to scream, hit, kick and throw more items such as books and chairs, according to the report.
The news station reports that a school notice indicates that a parent was contacted because the child remained inconsolable.
“Teachers were having a very difficult time controlling a second-grade student who was later determined to be experiencing an emotional crisis,” police spokeswoman Shawana Neely said in a press release Tuesday night, according to the report. An officer’s attempt to subdue the child was also unsuccessful, and so the decision was reportedly made to handcuff him.
“The student continued to respond in a manner that placed himself and others at risk of possible injury. In an effort to prevent the student from injuring himself or others, he was placed in restraints,” Neely added. However, with the child at 4 feet 2 inches and weighing all of 54 pounds, the restraints did no good, so the officer “maintained control of the student until a parent arrived.”
“While it is not our standard practice to place a student in restraints, the officer felt it necessary in order to prevent the possibility of injury to the student and staff,” Neely said.
“ADHD is a mental illness,” the boy’s mother told the news station. “How are you going to add now this trauma on top of an already existing mental illness is beyond me.”
Read more at KWTX.